John Sculley, Apple's CEO from 1983 to 1993 and the man famously responsible for Steve Jobs leaving the company in 1985 to form NeXT, has said that although he considers Apple to be experiencing a "lull in innovation", he thinks this is an industry-wide issue and that Apple will be the first to spot the next big trend.

Steve Jobs
Interviewed in the Huffington Post
, Sculley was asked about his comments in a CNBC interview last month when he said he "wouldn't expect to see a creative leap from Apple for maybe a few years."

I don’t think that it’s because Apple has lost its ability to innovate. My guess is that it has nothing to do with Apple at all, but with the current stage of technology.

Moore’s law has been completely predictable for 40 years. You really need about a generation between each of [the] big innovations [but] there are just moments when all the stars are aligned for breakthrough products. Steve had a tremendous talent to be able to spot those ahead of everyone. The question is, who is going be the one to spot the next big trend, the alignment of stars? I’d bet my money on Jony Ive being the person to spot that.

Sculley downplayed talk of an Apple HD TV set but fueled speculation on a possible iWatch.

If [Steve Jobs] were alive today, I suspect he’d be really fascinated about what’s happening with sensors. When you look at the ability to capture all kinds of information with sensors and then customize services back to individuals, that is so Steve Jobs. That’s the kind of thing he’d have salivated over.

I think the next big area of product [innovation] is probably not around a television, as many are speculating -- actually, Apple TV is pretty good right now. I think it will be around wearable sensor-type products.

Steve Jobs hired Sculley from Pepsi in 1983, but the two clashed over management styles and priorities, Jobs focusing on future innovation and Sculley more on current product lines and profitability. A showdown between the two resulted in Jobs leaving Apple to form NeXT, which Apple acquired in 1996, bringing Jobs back into the company three years after Sculley left.

(Thanks, Arthur.)

Top Rated Comments

nick_elt Avatar
121 months ago
how well did apple do under him again? he can't really talk about lack of innovation.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Ingot Avatar
121 months ago
I hope it makes my wrist snappier.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
RBMaraman Avatar
121 months ago
how well did apple do under him again? he can't really talk about lack of innovation.

No one argues that John Sculley wasn't a terrible CEO, but Apple hardly lacked innovation during his tenure. John oversaw Apple's entry into the portable market, the creation of FireWire and he championed the Newton. If you recall, Jony Ive and the iOS engineering team all went back to the Newton for development of the iPhone and iPad.

Also, Sculley's idea for the "Knowledge Navigator" (outlined in his 1987 book Odyssey) was the basis for several concepts integrated into the World Wide Web. Apple has also acknowledged that Siri development was spurred by Sculley.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
junior Avatar
121 months ago
You are mixing the word invention and innovation. The meaning of the word innovation requires commercial success.

You must have a different dictionary to everyone else.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
pancakedrawer Avatar
121 months ago
I hope it makes my wrist snappier.

Logged in just to upvote.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
smithrh Avatar
121 months ago
how well did apple do under him again? he can't really talk about lack of innovation.

beat me to it...
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

top stories 2jul2022

Top Stories: M2 MacBook Air Release Date, New HomePod Rumor, and More

Saturday July 2, 2022 6:00 am PDT by
The M2 MacBook Pro has started making its way into customers' hands and we're learning more about how it performs in a variety of situations, but all eyes are really on the upcoming M2 MacBook Air which has seen a complete redesign and should be arriving in a couple of weeks. Other top stories this week included a host of product rumors including additional M2 and even M3 Macs, an updated...
Mac Studio IO

Apple Begins Selling Refurbished Mac Studio Models

Thursday June 30, 2022 7:42 pm PDT by
Apple today began selling refurbished Mac Studio models for the first time in the United States, Canada, and select European countries, such as Belgium, Germany, Ireland, Spain, Switzerland, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom. In the United States, two refurbished Mac Studio configurations are currently available, including one with the M1 Max chip (10-core CPU and 24-core GPU) for...
macbook air m2

Exclusive: Apple Plans to Launch MacBook Air With M2 Chip on July 15

Wednesday June 29, 2022 5:23 pm PDT by
The redesigned MacBook Air with the all-new M2 Apple silicon chip will be available for customers starting Friday, July 15, MacRumors has learned from a retail source. The new MacBook Air was announced and previewed during WWDC earlier this month, with Apple stating availability will begin in July. The MacBook Air features a redesigned body that is thinner and lighter than the previous...
13 inch macbook pro m2 mock feature 2

M2 MacBook Pro Much Slower Than Previous Model

Friday July 1, 2022 2:24 am PDT by
Apple's new 13-inch MacBook Pro with the M2 chip features a significantly slower SSD compared to the previous model, resulting in poorer performance in some workflows, it has been discovered. Specifically, it has been found that the $1,299 base model with 256GB of storage has significantly slower SSD read and write speeds compared to the equivalent previous-generation 13-inch MacBook Pro....