Fortune has run a fascinating feature on Apple in the Tim Cook era, which (with equally fascinating timing) comes as Cook forgoes $75m in dividend payments from the company he took over as chief executive of in August.
The legacy of Steve Jobs still hangs heavy over the company, but Cook is painted as a more patient character, slowly changing the company culture (he is mentioned going into a talk by Peter Oppenheimer, Apple’s CFO, and sitting quietly at the back, not interrupting or even checking emails).
The telling part is that Cook is sold as someone keen to meet with investors, whereas Steve Jobs “wouldn’t have bothered”. The intention is clear: this is the same company at heart but it is doing things and engaging with the outside world in new ways.
The feature talks of how “there are signs of Apple becoming a more normal company” under Cook, where he does things (notably offer dividends and stock buybacks) that Jobs would not have entertained. How he will engage with content partners (notably the music business) remains to be seen, but he is positioned as someone more measured that Jobs.
This, given how central Jobs was to driving Apple and its products to be “insanely great”, comes with pros and cons. “He’s well-respected,” concludes the feature on how Cook is perceived within Apple, “but not worshiped.”