Papermaster's Departure Linked to 'Cultural Incompatibility' Rather Than Antenna Issues

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The Wall Street Journal provides some additional color on the departure of Apple's iPhone hardware engineering chief Mark Papermaster, citing "broader cultural incompatibility" rather than a direct link to the iPhone 4's antenna issues as reason for his exit.Exactly how much the problems with the iPhone 4 played in Mr. Papermaster's exit is unclear. The iPhone 4, a key device for Apple, has been beset by issues such as antenna reception and delayed production of a white version of the gadget. Several people familiar with Mr. Papermaster's situation said his departure was driven by a broader cultural incompatibility.

Mr. Papermaster had lost the confidence of Mr. Jobs months ago and hasn't been part of the decision-making process for some time, these people said. They added that Mr. Papermaster didn't appear to have the type of creative thinking expected at Apple and wasn't used to Apple's corporate culture, where even senior executives are expected to keep on top of the smallest details of their areas of responsibility and often have to handle many tasks directly, as opposed to delegating them.

One of these people also said Mr. Papermaster had difficulty maneuvering Apple's internal politics.Neither Papermaster nor Apple have yet offered any details on the circumstances behind his departure.

The report notes that it was Jobs who pressed forward with the iPhone 4's antenna design despite questions about its performance, suggesting that perhaps Papermaster does not bear as much blame as many have thought. In addition, Apple has claimed that the antenna design was in testing for two years prior to the launch of the iPhone 4, meaning that it had been designed and subjected to significant testing even before Papermaster officially joined the company in April 2009.

Article Link: Papermaster's Departure Linked to 'Cultural Incompatibility' Rather Than Antenna Issues
 

andy721

macrumors 6502a
Sep 29, 2007
591
0
FL
This is & conclude this ordeal with Apple. People with cancer will get mean. Simple as that & sad. But now he's cured hmm wonder how that happen maybe with luck or $ for the cure they keep bottled up in LABS. It's his decision to change his antics and treat his people nicer.
 

Small White Car

macrumors G4
Aug 29, 2006
10,899
1,125
Washington DC
Gruber hit the nail on the head when he noted that Papermaster (who was in charge of iPhone hardware) wasn't in the iPhone 4 demo video!

They had the Mac-hardware guy talking about the iPhone instead of Papermaster. That was before the iPhone 4 shipped and all the Antenna stuff surfaced. That's all the proof I need...the guy was apparently in trouble even before all this antenna stuff.
 

*LTD*

macrumors G4
Feb 5, 2009
10,703
1
Canada
This is & conclude this ordeal with Apple. People with cancer will get mean. Simple as that & sad. But now he's cured hmm wonder how that happen maybe with luck or $ for the cure they keep bottled up in LABS. It's his decision to change his antics and treat his people nicer.
What are you talking about??

Business is business. So someone was fired/let go/politely asked to "volunteer" to leave, etc. Whatever. And an IBM guy at that. Big friggin deal. On to other news . . .
 

pukifloyd

macrumors 6502a
Jun 25, 2008
987
85
Scottsdale
The report notes that it was Jobs who pressed forward with the iPhone 4's antenna design despite questions about its performance, suggesting that perhaps Papermaster does not bear as much blame as many have thought. In addition, Apple has claimed that the antenna design was in testing for two ears prior to the launch of the iPhone 4, meaning that it had been designed and subjected to significant testing even before Papermaster officially joined the company in April 2009.
Jobs tested this design for 2 years and still it has these issues? and why would he rush to release it if there was a problem? :confused:
 

bushbaby

macrumors 6502a
Aug 12, 2007
537
37
SoCal
They had the Mac-hardware guy talking about the iPhone instead of Papermaster. That was before the iPhone 4 shipped and all the Antenna stuff surfaced. That's all the proof I need...the guy was apparently in trouble even before all this antenna stuff.
As reported here, quoted from other sources, all this antenna stuff probably started long before you and I heard about it. Let's hope Apple knows enough about their own company, and with their state-of-the-art testing facility, that they knew of the problems with it. The whole reason for designing a "bumper" that doesn't protect the phone, but helped the antenna problems, the discussion that perhaps they should ship the phone with it, etc.

"The iPhone 4, a key device for Apple, has been beset by issues such as antenna reception and delayed production of a white version of the gadget. Several people familiar with Mr. Papermaster's situation said his departure was driven by a broader cultural incompatibility."

In terms of PR, this is to be expected. Apple people are not about to say that Papermaster was fired because of the 4. That's the last thing they want to put out. But with all the problems (beyond just the antenna), they had to boot him.
 

bushbaby

macrumors 6502a
Aug 12, 2007
537
37
SoCal
Jobs tested this design for 2 years and still it has these issues? and why would he rush to release it if there was a problem? :confused:
One theory is the lost prototype in the bar that went on Gizmodo. Another is to beat out competitive smartphones being released.
 

Small White Car

macrumors G4
Aug 29, 2006
10,899
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As reported here, quoted from other sources, all this antenna stuff probably started long before you and I heard about it.
No, the "stuff" I'm talking about is when people started complaining about it and Consumer Reports said they wouldn't recommend the phone.

Apple knew about the flaw a year ago, yes, but they honestly didn't think it was going to be as big a problem as it was. Antenna work is all compromises and trade-offs. They knew the flaws but they thought the gains made up for them.

It was a 2-steps-forward, 1-step-back in their mind. They thought people would notice but say "oh well, but it's better overall so it doesn't matter."

What they DIDN'T know was that people wouldn't care about the steps forward. Apple didn't guess that the advances were things people wouldn't really notice or care about. I really do think that part surprised them.

Thus, I stand by my "this stuff happened after it shipped" comments. Just because they knew of the flaw it doesn't mean they knew it would be the big problem it turned out to be.


Jobs tested this design for 2 years and still it has these issues? and why would he rush to release it if there was a problem? :confused:
And all that answers this, too. They knew about the flaw...they didn't know it would become a big problem. Those are two different things.
 

ouimetnick

macrumors 68030
Aug 28, 2008
2,519
779
Beverly, Massachusetts
Well I think Apple needs to stop making touch products for a little while, and do something with the Mac. Boring hardware releases. OMG a Entry C2D for $1199, OSX needs some new things. iLife and iWork need a refresh.
 

notjustjay

macrumors 603
Sep 19, 2003
6,044
116
Canada, eh?
It was a 2-steps-forward, 1-step-back in their mind. They thought people would notice but say "oh well, but it's better overall so it doesn't matter."
That's an interesting point, and unfortunately an accurate observation of how Apple seems to work.

Time and time again Apple will release a product and everyone says "Wow, it's perfect -- except they took away the ____!" Two steps forward, one (small) step back, and usually, most people didn't mind or care. Apple always have an excuse, too. Missing floppy drive? Floppies are dying! No matte screen? Everyone likes glossy better anyway! Missing Firewire port? Who uses those anymore? Missing numeric keypad? Bet you never used it! No Blu-ray? Everything's streaming online now.

The pattern is the same, the excuse is the same: We're forward thinking. You're not. Get with the times!

Unfortunately, there's simply no way to spin "broken antenna" as forward-thinking. The best they could do is "Hey, everyone else's is flawed too!"
 

cvaldes

macrumors 68040
Dec 14, 2006
3,237
0
somewhere else
Well I think Apple needs to stop making touch products for a little while, and do something with the Mac. Boring hardware releases. OMG a Entry C2D for $1199, OSX needs some new things. iLife and iWork need a refresh.
Well I think Apple should ignore you and keep doing things that drive increases in shareholder value, like boring hardware releases. After all, that's where their margins are.

OMG, the entry C2D is way below $1199. Just visit apple.com and learn about the Mac mini.

I agree that iLife and iWork could be due for a refresh, but those software bundles drive hardware sales.

That's my perspective as an AAPL shareholder.
 

awmazz

macrumors 65816
Jul 4, 2007
1,100
0
One theory is the lost prototype in the bar that went on Gizmodo.
That unit had a case on it. I assume all the test units were in cases. I assume most iPhone 4s in consumer's hands will be in cases. Case closed. ;)

PS. Even without a case, I don't even hold my non-iPhone phone the way that gets the antennae issue. It's a beat up. I feel irked that my soon to arrive iPhone 4 has been tarnished by the way some cro-magnon gumbies hold their phones, you know, like the people who hold their fork at dinner in a fist as if it were a shovel to scoop food into their mouths. Why should my new tool be judged by the way these tools hold their tools?
 

ouimetnick

macrumors 68030
Aug 28, 2008
2,519
779
Beverly, Massachusetts
Well I think Apple should ignore you and keep doing things that drive increases in shareholder value, like boring hardware releases. After all, that's where their margins are.

OMG, the entry C2D is way below $1199. Just visit apple.com and learn about the Mac mini.

I agree that iLife and iWork could be due for a refresh, but those software bundles drive hardware sales.

That's my perspective as an AAPL shareholder.
I want a notebook with a C2D. And not the MacBook, it doesn't have a backlit keyboard or durable casing.
 

JoshBoy

macrumors 6502
Oct 12, 2008
405
198
Sydney, Australia
I just got an iphone 4 today and i can not replicate the issue or make it drop down in bars. By far it has better reception than the 3GS that would drop in and out of service, now i have nearly full bars.
 

parapup

macrumors 65816
Oct 31, 2006
1,292
49
So it was his IBM-typeness that did him in.
Possibly. At IBM Customer is Always Right(TM). In other words I can see how an ex-IBMer would have lots of trouble telling customers a) You are holding it wrong b) You don't need that feature c) Buy an Android phone etc.

Creativity is needed to come up with such gems.
 

Dr Kevorkian94

macrumors 68020
Jun 9, 2009
2,137
31
SI, NY
Any data to back up those claims? :rolleyes:
Exacty I see no data for that, plus this was blown way out of preportion just because it was apple and an iPhone. I have friends who have the same problems with there non iPhones and dident notice untill all this happend. I saw a guys sinature before and it said this (not exact): the media reported the lines for the iPhone also they reported how bad the iPhone is because of the "antenna problem" but they did not report the huge return lines. And for what it's worth it's not just the phone it's the network, as much as the "problem" annoys me it's fixed with a case. Also idk about u but when I make calls I don't hold the left corner and I am left handed.
 

cvaldes

macrumors 68040
Dec 14, 2006
3,237
0
somewhere else
I want a notebook with a C2D. And not the MacBook, it doesn't have a backlit keyboard or durable casing.
Odd, MacBooks (both Pro and non-Pro models) have been shipping with the Core 2 Duo or better for about four years.

Have I stepped into a time warp and landed back in 2005?