The Street’s Rocco Pendola has some pretty scathing words for Apple CEO Tim Cook and for former BlackBerry co-CEO Jim Balsillie today.
Pendola says Cook’s appearance at the All Things D conference this week in Rancho Palos Verdes, California, was in his view, a disaster. He says the Apple CEO’s lack of detail about upcoming products is worrying, and his assurances hollow.
“I really don’t want Tim Cook to be exactly like Steve Jobs.” says Pendola. “That said, I don’t want the opposite. A CEO who more closely resembles the one-time leader of the artist formerly known as RIM — that’s BlackBerry (BBRY) — James Balsillie. Cook sounded a lot like Balsillie Tuesday night. ”
Pendola compares Cook’s inertia to BlackBerry’s around the time of the PlayBook release.
“With fifth grade comprehension skills you could have sniffed out the trouble at RIM. It was apparent. Nobody cared about the Playbook, Balsillie knew it and he was floating overly optimistic and wholly random numbers.”
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Shares of Apple began falling from highs over $700 last September, and as the slide continues Cook has become a lightning rod for criticism. In February, one writer pointed out that most every time he speaks in public Apple’s stock tacks on another loss.
Cook’s appearance at All Things D this week was widely regarded as weak. On the first day of the conference, hosts Walter Mossberg and Kara Swisher asked Cook if Apple had “lost its cool”.
“Absolutely not,” he replied.
Pendola says Apple has lost something, even if he can’t figure out exactly what.
“Something’s just not right. Convince yourself otherwise all you want, but even if Cook thinks he has something special coming, the odds of it measuring up, given what came before it, are slim.”