Jimmy Iovine Dismisses Rumors Suggesting He Plans to Leave Apple

Last week, rumors from several sources suggested Apple Music executive Jimmy Iovine was planning to leave Apple in August following the final vesting of his stock, but Iovine yesterday told Variety that he isn't going to leave the company.

Iovine made the comments at the Grammy Museum during a Q&A session held to promote "The Defiant Ones," a documentary about his career and friendship with Dr. Dre. According to Iovine, he is committed to helping iTunes chief Eddy Cue and Apple CEO Tim Cook continue to grow Apple Music and take it "all the way."

"I am almost 65, have been with Apple for four years and in 2 1/2 years the [Apple Music] service has gotten to well over 30 million subscribers and Beats has continued its successful run. But there's still a lot more we'd like to do. I am committed to doing whatever Eddy [Cue], Tim [Cook] and Apple need me to do, to help wherever and however I can, to take this all the way. I am in the band."

While Iovine did confirm that the final portion of the stock he was granted when Apple acquired Beats will vest in August, he says the bulk of his stock "vested a long time ago." A tiny portion remains unvested, but it's "not what [he] thinks about."

"The bottom line is I'm loyal to the guys at Apple. I love Apple, and I really love musicians. That's why those articles annoyed me, because it had nothing to do with reality. It made it out to be all about money."

Iovine plans to continue to help the streaming music industry advance, and while he says he'll "eventually" need to slow down, that's not happening soon. His goal is to get streaming music right.

According to Iovine the streaming music industry needs to become "more interesting" to be successful, following in the footsteps of companies like Netflix with original content. Apple has been focusing heavily on original content with exclusive music-related documentaries and television shows like "Planet of the Apps" and "Carpool Karaoke: The Series," which have debuted on Apple Music, and it is delving into serious original content programming with several new TV shows on order.

Iovine first joined the Apple Music team in 2014 when Apple acquired Beats Electronics and the Beats Music streaming service, both of which were co-founded by Iovine and Dr. Dre. Iovine has a much longer history with the company, though, first pitching a subscription music service to Steve Jobs in 2003.

Though Iovine has no official title at Apple, he has been heavily involved in Apple Music since its 2015 launch and has negotiated many of the streaming deals for the service alongside Eddy Cue, Dr. Dre, Robert Kondrk, Trent Reznor, and other Apple Music execs.

Under Iovine's leadership, Apple Music has seen strong growth, with the service now boasting more than 30 million subscribers.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
36 months ago
Man, this guy's name is always linked with bad news -- with one exception: the rumor he was leaving Apple.
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
36 months ago

He may not fit the "apple fanboy" image, but hes been in the music industry for a very long time and has a very large area of influence. He may not be able to speak well in public but dont discredit his successes because of that.

Yeah, I don't understand what everyone's problem is with him. No, he doesn't fit the typical tech nerd mold of Apple's executive team. But frankly, neither does Angela. These are new executives meant to help push the company in new and sometimes uncomfortable places. That's how you grow.

Jimmy, specifically, is exactly what you said, a music mogul. Yes, money and tech notoriety certainly help in negotiations. But having worked for someone who was/is another music mogul, and friends with Iovine, it is VERY much still an industry about relationships. All the these decision makers have more money than they know what to do with. So, sitting across the negotiation table from an old friend, who you remember from back in the days when you were both hustling to "make it," still matters a lot in this industry.

I don't think people are realizing that.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
36 months ago

It is fine with me. Tim is the one that really has to go.

Why? TC has done a solid job as CEO. Apple's revenue stream is more stable under his leadership, and he's also diversified Apple's income portfolio (e.g., revenue from services continues to grow).
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
36 months ago
It is fine with me. Tim is the one that really has to go.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
36 months ago

Yeah, I don't understand what everyone's problem is with him. No, he doesn't fit the typical tech nerd mold of Apple's executive team. But frankly, neither does Angela. These are new executives meant to help push the company in new and sometimes uncomfortable places. That's how you grow.

Jimmy, specifically, is exactly what you said, a music mogul. Yes, money and tech notoriety certainly help in negotiations. But having worked for someone who was/is another music mogul, and friends with Iovine, it is VERY much still an industry about relationships. All the these decision makers have more money than they know what to do with. So, sitting across the negotiation table from an old friend, who you remember from back in the days when you were both hustling to "make it," still matters a lot in this industry.

I don't think people are realizing that.

To me, it would seem pretty ridiculous to want him to leave when I've never met or worked with the guy.

I think Apple knows a lot better than the armchair CEOs here on Macrumors about his value to the company.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
36 months ago
I wonder if this guy actually does anything.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

'iPhone 12 mini' Name Reappears in Leaked Apple iPhone 12 Case Stickers

Friday September 25, 2020 1:58 am PDT by
Earlier this week a proven leaker claimed that the iPhone 12 lineup would be named "iPhone 12 mini," "iPhone 12," "iPhone 12 Pro," and "iPhone 12 Pro Max," and today the same nomenclature has appeared again in a photo depicting alleged stickers from unreleased Silicone iPhone cases originating from Apple's international distribution center in Ireland. The photo shows three stickers with the...

Top Stories: iOS 14 Feature Tour, 'iPhone 12 mini' Rumors, Apple Watch Band Controversy

Saturday September 26, 2020 6:00 am PDT by
Things started to calm down a bit this week following last week's rush of media event, Apple Watch and iPad launches, and the release of iOS 14 and other operating updates. But that doesn't mean there wasn't still a lot of news, from digging deeper into iOS 14 to more iPhone 12 rumors to the uproar over trying to exchange band sizes on the new Apple Watch. On top of all of that, we heard...

Apple Releases iOS 14.0.1 With Fix for Bug That Resets Default Apps After Rebooting

Thursday September 24, 2020 10:12 am PDT by
Apple today released iOS 14.0.1, the first update to the iOS 14 operating system that was released on September 16. Today's update is a bug fix update addressing issues that weren't able to be fixed in the initial iOS 14 launch. The iOS 14.0.1 update is available on all eligible devices over-the-air in the Settings app. To access the new software, go to Settings > General > Software Update. ...

New Images Leak of iPhone 12 Braided USB-C to Lightning Cable

Thursday September 24, 2020 2:37 am PDT by
Rumors suggest Apple's upcoming iPhone 12 models will ship with a new Lightning to USB-C cable that includes a braided fabric design. Images of the purported cables were leaked in July, and today leaker Mr White has shared new images that give us a closer look at what we might get included in the iPhone 12 box. The photos show a USB-C to Lightning cable with a clearly braided design rather...

New Version of Microsoft Office Coming Next Year That Won't Require a Subscription

Thursday September 24, 2020 1:53 am PDT by
Microsoft will next year offer a new perpetual release of Microsoft Office for Mac and Windows that doesn't require a subscription to use, according to the software giant (via Windows Central). "Microsoft Office will also see a new perpetual release for both Windows and Mac, in the second half of 2021," said Microsoft in a blog post announcing the next version of its Exchange server,...

Video Offers Closer Look at Apple Face Mask

Friday September 25, 2020 5:25 am PDT by
YouTube channel Unbox Therapy has today shared a new video giving a closer look at Apple's reusable face masks for corporate and retail employees. Apple's own face mask was designed by the company's Engineering and Industrial Design teams amid the global health crisis for corporate and retail employees, and the boxes include Apple's famous "Designed by Apple in California" text. The...

Upcoming Xbox App Update Will Let Xbox Users Stream Games to iPhone and iPad

Friday September 25, 2020 11:58 am PDT by
Microsoft is testing a new version of its Xbox app that will let Xbox users play games remotely on their iPhones and iPads using streaming functionality. The new feature was rolled out to TestFlight users this morning. The Xbox streaming option is distinct from Microsoft's xCloud service, which it has been clashing with Apple over. xCloud is designed to stream games from Microsoft's servers, ...

Apple Releases macOS Catalina 10.15.7 With Fixes for WiFi Bug, 27-Inch iMac Graphics Issues

Thursday September 24, 2020 10:32 am PDT by
Apple today released macOS Catalina 10.15.7, the latest update to the macOS Catalina software. macOS Catalina 10.15.7 fixes several major bugs that Mac users have been experiencing, and it comes a month after the latest macOS Catalina release. The ‌‌‌macOS Catalina‌‌‌ 10.15.6 Supplemental Update can be downloaded from the Mac App Store using the Update feature in the System...

iOS 14: 'Phoenix 2' Space Shooter Delivers Playable Demo via App Clips

Saturday September 26, 2020 2:08 pm PDT by
One of the new features that arrived in iOS 14 is called App Clips. App Clips is described by Apple to be a "small part of your app" that can be available to users at just the right moment.App Clips focus on finishing one task quickly. An ideal App Clip experience allows users to open and complete a task in seconds. Instead of requiring an App Store download, they can be loaded and run via...

Apple's iPhone 12 Event Could Happen on October 13 Based on Rumors From Mobile Operators

Wednesday September 23, 2020 11:51 am PDT by
Apple's upcoming iPhone-centric event could perhaps be held on Tuesday, October 13, according to information shared with MacRumors by an employee at a UK cellular carrier. There's no way for us to confirm the dates at this point in time nor are we sure on the credibility of the source, but even without a rumor, Tuesday, October 13 is a good guess based on Apple's historic launch timelines, ...