Tony Fadell: "Apple is different from other companies"

Tony Fadell: "Apple is different from other companies"

At a conference organized by Bloomberg, Tony Fadell whom we call the father of the iPod, explained in broad outline the benefits of Apple's corporate culture where nothing is lost, nothing is created, everything is transformed.


Tony Fadell CEO of Nest and responsible for the design of the first iPod in 2001 presented his experience in the Apple industry at a conference. Fadell compared his years with the Cupertino glove to those he spent at Philips. According to him, 99% of the products designed and developed at Apple are marketed. Conversely, at Philips we talk about 9 products out of 10 canceled. According to him, this regressive corporate culture is not good for employee morale and does not allow innovation or risk taking, the two components of Apple.

Also according to their ex-employee, Philips is obsessed with the figures: If you tell someone you want to build a thermostat and they only look at the numbers, no one will want to do it. Nobody would have made the iPod Nobody to develop the iPhone .

So Apple would be an idyllic company where the corporate culture would allow employees to flourish?

In any case, this is what Tony Fadell seems to imply in his not very objective remarks. How can you compare two companies that do not play in the same court? Where Apple has a small range of products, Philips is on several fronts at the same time, thus designing much more material. How then to compare the marketing of different product ranges?

What also annoys are the many testimonies that the net has been able to collect during the years Steve Jobs. Where Mr. Fadell exhibits an idyllic workspace at Apple, many others denounce difficult working conditions.

The biography produced by Walter Isaacson presents the many difficult aspects of the ex-boss of Apple. His irascible character, his bipolarity and his excesses. Like making employees work as much as possible until the result is perfect. A concern for detail which could lead to many compulsory overtime hours.

We can also present the polemic of working conditions in Apple Stores where managers call employees to order via Walkie-Talkie and where part-time workers work up to 30 hours per week.

Another case also splashed an intractable Jobs via its Chinese subcontractors: on May 5, 2012, 137 employees were intoxicated via N-Hexane, the chemical used to clean the notches of tablets. Chinese employees may be required to work up to 150 hours of overtime per month to maintain production quotas.

So Mr. Fadell, is life at Apple rosy for everyone?

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Quentin Goosens (St.)