Scott Forstall's Personality, Origins of iOS, and Lost iPhone 4 Prototype

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Oct 12, 2011.

  1. macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Businessweek has an in-depth look at Apple's Senior Vice President of iOS Software, Scott Forstall. Readers will be familiar with Forstall from his keynote appearances where he often demonstrates the latest iOS features.

    The Businessweek article is a not always flattering look at the man who has been partly responsible for much of Apple's success with the iPhone. Forstall is described as almost as a "mini-Steve" being a detail oriented manager but also one that is difficult to work with.

    In fact, the article suggests that Forstall was a major factor in Tony Fadell's departure from Apple in early 2010. Fadell had been called the "Godfather" of the iPod due to his key role in that device's creation.

    Forstall and Fadell reportedly went head to head in 2005 when Steve Jobs pitted the two against each other in determining the underlying operating system for the iPhone. The two possibilities were a Linux-based operating system or a Mac OS X based one.
    Forstall, of course, led the shrunken down Mac OS X project and ultimately won, but the bad blood over time was said to be a factor in Fadell's decision to leave.

    The profile also reports that Forstall may also been an indirect cause of the lost iPhone 4 prototype in 2010. Forstall reportedly convinced Jobs to allow dozens of his engineers to carry prototypes of the then unreleased iPhone 4. It was one of those employees who lost the iPhone 4 at a Redwood City, California bar where it was picked up and sold to Gizmodo.

    Forstall had originally joined NeXT, Inc. after college and came to Apple with Steve Jobs after Apple's acquisition of NeXT in 1996. The NeXT operating system then became the basis for Mac OS X and ultimately the iPhone.

    Article Link: Scott Forstall's Personality, Origins of iOS, and Lost iPhone 4 Prototype
  2. macrumors 68020


    May 6, 2010
    The United States
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    Some good, some bad.
  3. macrumors regular

    Aug 1, 2011
    Interesting. A shrunken down OS X just seems like an all around better idea. Good call Forstall.
  4. macrumors 6502a

    Don Kosak

    Mar 12, 2010
    Hilo, Hawaii
    From a software development standpoint, I am thrilled that the Mini OS X won the battle.

    OS X and Cocoa are an incredibly mature development environment that's a joy to code in.

    I started doing NeXT / Objective C work back in the early '90's on the original black cube NeXT workstations. It's amazing how far ahead of its time those workstations were.
  5. macrumors 68030


    Oct 31, 2007
    Austin, TX
    Forstall = Jobs Jr.?

    Only time will tell, but so far I've been impressed with Scott's work.
  6. macrumors 6502


    Jul 25, 2010
    Interesting. Forstall appears to be a very nice guy. I'm glad Mac OS X won.
  7. macrumors 6502a


    Aug 3, 2010
    I think it was a no brainer to go with OS X, what's the fuss here all about.
  8. Slurpy2k8, Oct 12, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2011

    macrumors 6502

    Feb 26, 2008
    Newsflash- this is what it takes to get **** done and strive for excellence. I love how people naively think that Apple could have become what it is today, and can stay that way, with chilled-out push-overs and mellow dudes leading it. You can criticize what you see as personality flaws from the comforts of your position on a messageboards, as everyone did with SJ, but at least have the common sense to realize this is what is required to make it, especially in an industry as cut throat as this one. SJ got Apple to where it is precisely by having insanely high standards, exacting requirements, and contro-freak (I hate that term) who micro-manages even the tiniest details. And yes, that naturally produces someone who is difficult to work with. But it's a sacrifice that produces results. I know, as I've worked in high pressure environments. I truly hope Forstall IS like Jobs, as are others in the company, cause that's what Apple needs. People who fight tooth and nail for their vision if they believe it's the right one. That's what Steve did- he did it everyday.

    Forstall made absolutely the right call. And out of all the public figures at Apple, I like him the best. Seems to be the most Steve-like in his charisma, energy, passion, and onstage presence. Not Steve by a long shot, obviously. I just hope there is a single person at Apple with a vision to lead everyone else by, because decisions by committee will never work. Someone able to play hardball with content providers, as SJ did with iTunes, iPhone, etc. Damn, now I'm getting depressed again.
  9. macrumors 68020


    Sep 22, 2009
    Honestly I've always been happier to see Forstall present something rather than Phil or Tim. He seems more lively and entertaining. Mini-Steve? We shall see :)
  10. gecis, Oct 12, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2011

    macrumors regular

    Jun 26, 2010
    I always knew that there was a douche hidden somewhere inside him. It is apparent everytime he speaks.
  11. macrumors 6502


    Sep 28, 2005
    Bay Area, California
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A334 Safari/7534.48.3)

    Forstall is a badass.
  12. macrumors 6502a


    Mar 5, 2006
    Southern California
    I actually feel the opposite. Im not sure why, but whenever I see him on stage I just see snobbiness and jocky-ness. Obviously I don't know the guy and I could be wrong, but I sense that he's in his own world, and he's a douche to everyone. Of course, I could be wrong.
  13. macrumors 603


    Oct 29, 2007
    Android is bases on Linux for those who are curious.

    Also, it wasn't Google's baby at first, they bought it and developed it.
  14. macrumors 6502a


    Aug 3, 2010
    Young Steve was the same if you watch some old videos.
  15. macrumors 65816


    Jan 29, 2009
    Stillwater, OK
    I actually think he delivers best keynotes after steve jobs
  16. macrumors 6502

    Jan 20, 2006
    Silicon Valley, CA
    Potential successor to Tim Cook?

    Having met Scott at WWDC in 2009, I was certainly impressed with him personally. That was already based upon his public work as well.

    This article certainly reaffirms for me that Apple is in quite good hands.
  17. macrumors 68000

    Sep 18, 2010
    Hamilton, New Zealand
  18. macrumors 6502


    Jun 29, 2007
    Washington DC
    I am glad we get to hear the people behind Apple and not only about Steve. There are so many incredible people who deserve so much credit and respect. Good article.


    HAHA lol he reminds me of that evil factory millionaire guy from The Simpsons. Weird.
  19. macrumors 6502a


    Apr 20, 2010
    Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
    I really like Scott Forstall.
    But sometimes when he does a keynote looks like he was just up all night every day working on iOS.
  20. macrumors 68040


    Jun 23, 2010
    Uh, no. Cause of iPhone being lost - dumb/drunk engineer who left it in a bar.
  21. macrumors 6502a


    Aug 3, 2010
    Maybe he was.
  22. macrumors regular


    Jan 14, 2007
    Las Vegas
    it's the bed head and bug eyes
  23. macrumors newbie

    Mar 21, 2009
    There is a big part of me that is relieved to hear that someone over there is still a cut throat jerk.
  24. macrumors 6502a

    Jan 15, 2007
    I have to doubt a lot of the facts presented in the article

    I highly doubt Apple was ever seriously considering using a Linux-based kernel for the iPhone(they may have been debating extending the iPod kernel, but thats different). The reason is quite simple, if they used Linux they would be forced to distribute a massive amount of the code that they distributed on the phone in order to be in compliance with the GPL.

    While it would still be possible to have a completely unique(and thus closed source) user land on top of that, Apple would essentially have it hands tied when it came to distributing source, and the sheer complexity of the license agreements would have made this a very risky venture, link to the wrong code and you may have to open up your entire OS.

    Now compare this to the BSD license that Apple overwhelmingly(and starting with Lion almost exclusively) uses, which gives Apple much more flexibility on which code they release and which code they do not.

    Steve is legendary for wanting control over everything, I doubt he would have ever seriously considered a Linux-based OS, which makes me think that the author of this article probably mixed up unix and Linux, which does sort of throw the entire rest of the article into doubt.
  25. macrumors 6502a


    Aug 3, 2010
    Couldn't agree more.

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