Is Apple in its Sammy Hagar era?
When I was a kid growing up in ancient times (the 1980s), cable TV was a big deal. Service wasn't available everywhere, and the expense wasn't easy for my parents to justify.
But when we finally got cable around 1987, I became absolutely mesmerized by MTV -- my heroes became acts like U2, Madonna, Guns N' Roses, and of course Van Halen, whose frontman was the campy, irreverent, and unpredictable David Lee Roth.
I had no idea that Diamond Dave had left the group a couple years earlier, replaced with the less-exciting Sammy Hagar.
Van Halen went from being "Hot For Teacher" to wondering "Why Can't This Be Love?"
Ugh. MTV was way more fun when my parents didn't approve of what I was watching.
As we see Apple's stock way down from last year's highs and concerns abound regarding the company's ability to innovate in the face of massive competition, I wonder if it's going through its own Sammy Hagar era.
Steve Jobs was a mercurial taskmaster with impeccable taste and uncanny charisma. If he told us that Apple was getting into the cat food business, we'd be at the supermarket placing pre-orders for Fluffy's new dinner.
We all need to admit that, for all his strengths as an operational manager, Tim Cook does not deliver the sizzle the way Steve Jobs did.
Just like how Sammy delivered a lot of money to Van Halen, but not much excitement.