updated 11:05 pm EDT, Sun August 8, 2010
Papermaster said to have lost Jobs' favor
Senior VP Mark Papermaster's abrupt departure from Apple may have stemmed from personal disagreement with CEO Steve Jobs, contacts claimed Sunday night [sub. required]. The executive reportedly lost Jobs' confidence "months ago" and hadn't been influential for awhile. He allegedly neither had the creativity nor the sheer attention to detail expected to survive in the culture of Apple's higher-ups.
The since-departed executive may have been placed off-guard by the timing of his arrival, the WSJ tipsters said. With a liver transplant keeping Jobs away from work for the first half of 2009, he wasn't as prepared as others for Jobs' reassumption of more direct control later on. Papermaster had come from a relatively traditional firm such as IBM.
In spite of the seeming ill fit, the sources blamed Jobs, and not Papermaster, for letting the iPhone 4 design go ahead knowing the risks. He greenlit the program as much as a year ago, the insiders explained. Claims earlier on Sunday had said the problem was known as early as two years ago, but this might not necessarily been apparent to Jobs until later.
Jobs has denied theories that he had ignored warnings and, at the July 16 event, referred to one accusation as a "total crock." Apple has made a public show of the extent of its testing, going so far as to give the media a rare lab tour to show much it accounts for real-world conditions. The antenna issues with the iPhone 4 have done little to curb sales, although Apple has had to take a significant expense to subsidize free cases for those affected by the signal drops.