Apple’s New Hardware Chief Johny Srouji Awarded Nearly $10 Million in Stock

Apple’s newly promoted Senior Vice President of Hardware Technologies Johny Srouji was awarded 90,270 restricted stock units on October 5, 2015, according to a recent filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The RSUs awarded vest 12.5% in semi-annual installments over a four year period ending October 2019.

Srouji now has a total of 217,305 RSUs and 101,881 common stock units, which together amount to just over $34 million at AAPL’s current trading price of around $107 per share. The latest batch of 90,270 RSUs are currently valued at approximately $9.6 million.

Apple often rewards high-level executives with RSUs based on their performance. In August, for example, Apple CEO Tim Cook and Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue received 560,000 and 350,000 RSUs respectively worth over $97 million combined. Apple retail chief Angela Ahrendts also received 113,334 RSUs as a signing bonus upon joining Apple in May 2014.

Srouji was promoted to Senior Vice President of Hardware Technologies on December 17, as part of a larger executive team makeover that saw Jeff Williams promoted to COO and marketing chief Phil Schiller take over App Store leadership across all Apple platforms. Tor Myhren, chief creative officer at ad agency Grey, will also join Apple in early 2016 as Vice President of Marketing Communications.

Srouji joined Apple in 2008 to lead development of the A4 chip for iPhone 4, and he now oversees silicon and hardware technologies, including batteries, application processors, storage controllers, sensors silicon, display silicon and other chipsets across Apple’s entire product line. Prior to Apple, he held senior positions at Intel and IBM in the areas of processor development and design.

Tags: AAPL, Johny Srouji, SEC, RSUs
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Rovio CEO Leaving ‘Angry Birds’ Company After Just One Year

Rovio, the company behind the successful Angry Birds mobile franchise, today announced that its current CEO Pekka Rantala will be stepping down from the role after just one year in office. As Retuers reported, Rantala’s time at the company included multiple job cuts and restructuring plans within Rovio, and his tenure coincided with the company’s first reported profit decline since the launch of Angry Birds in 2009.

The company has now announced that chief legal officer Kati Levoranta will take the reins as CEO in the first quarter of 2016, after Rantala officially vacates the position. It also revealed a new initiative where „more independence“ will be given its two biggest branches: games and media. Mikael Hed, former Rovio CEO, will lead the media branch while Wilhelm Taht, the current head of external products, will take the lead on the games side. According to the company, this corporate-wide policy change is what spurred Rantala to step down.

„We used to have a corporate model with centralized decisions, but that resulted into too slow reacting in very competitive markets,“ chairman and main owner Kaj Hed told Reuters in an interview. „As the CEO will not be so hands-on anymore, he (Rantala) felt that it wasn’t for him anymore.“

Earlier in the year, reports confirmed that 2014 included Rovio’s first major profit decline due to a lessening interest by fans in the company’s physical consumer products like clothing and toys. Rovio’s profit decline from 2014 also led to the forecasting of impending decline this year, causing 213 jobs to be cut at the company back in October.

The Finnish developer’s Angry Birds franchise brought the company huge success, but has seen diminishing returns recently. At the time of the decline in profit announcement, Rantala hung hope on the impending launch of Angry Birds 2 and next summer’s The Angry Birds Movie as ways to bring the franchise back into the public consciousness.

Tags: Angry Birds, Rovio
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BlackBerry to exit Pakistan, after government demanded unrestricted access to its servers

BlackBerry says it has „no choice but to exit [Pakistan] entirely“ after the government demanded „unfettered access“ to its servers, to allow it to read every email and BBM message sent there. Read more…

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Eddy Cue, Tim Cook and Adobe Discuss iPad Pro Ahead of November 11 Launch

Following today’s announcement that iPad Pro online orders begin November 11, with in-store availability later this week, CNNMoney and The Independent have published interviews with Apple executives Eddy Cue and Tim Cook respectively about the new 12.9-inch tablet.

Cue described the iPad Pro as great for consuming content, such as emails, news and websites, and spoke in general terms about how Apple pushes itself to „create tools that let people solve incredible problems.“ He also praised the tablet’s new four-speaker design that delivers stereo sound.

„One of the things with the iPad Pro that’s amazing is the sound — it’s got four speakers on it,“ said Cue. „And so the first time – even myself as we were developing it – I got my hands on it and I heard it, it changed the way I thought of the product even. I didn’t realize how much of a difference it was going to make that you have stereo sound coming out of a device like this.“

Cook also said the iPad Pro delivers a „first-class audio experience,“ and called the tablet a capable „laptop replacement“ when used with a Smart Keyboard. The chief executive further emphasized that the Apple Pencil is not a stylus, but rather a sketching tool that complements the iPad Pro’s traditional multi-touch input.

“Well, we didn’t really do a stylus, we did a Pencil. The traditional stylus is fat, it has really bad latency so you’re sketching here and it’s filling the line in somewhere behind. You can’t sketch with something like that, you need something that mimics the look and feel of the pencil itself or you’re not going to replace it. We’re not trying to replace finger touch, we’re complementing it with the Pencil.”

Cook believes the iPad Pro’s target market will consist of a lot of PC users, customers without Apple products and existing iPad users looking to upgrade to a „very different“ device. The tablet also has value for creative companies like Touchpress, the makers of several interactive musical apps for Apple devices.

Where the iPad Pro is concerned, Alex Johnston, Chief Marketing Officer, told me: “For a business like Touchpress with the kind of content we like to produce, we value the more beautiful screen, the better audio. We re-imagine familiar music or text in a way to give you fresh perspectives on it. So having more screen real estate allows us to do that a lot.

“The thing that struck me the most,” Johnston went on, “is that it completely transformed the iPad experience when you use the Pencil or the Keyboard with it. It’s not just that I want it because it’s the best iPad, it’s that the tools that go with it allow me to do things that my finger won’t allow me to do.”

Adobe has also shared a video where visual designers, illustrators, educators and other creative professionals offer positive first impressions of the iPad Pro and Apple Pencil, with a focus on Creative Cloud apps including Illustrator Draw, Photoshop Mix, Photoshop Sketch and Photoshop Fix.

iPad Pro pricing starts at $799 for the entry-level 32GB Wi-Fi only model. A 128GB Wi-Fi only model is available for $949, and a 128GB Wi-Fi + Cellular model is available for $1,079. The 12.9-inch tablet is available in the three signature iPad colors: Space Gray, Silver, and Gold.

Related Roundup: iPad Pro
Tags: Tim Cook, Eddy Cue, Adobe, Adobe Creative Cloud
Buyer’s Guide: iPad Pro (Don’t Buy)
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Facebook orders employees to switch to Android

Facebook has a problem of iPhone love: too many of its employees prefer Apple’s device when given the chance between an iPhone and Android smartphone. This means that up until now, far less workers have been able to truly live in an Android environment where they can identify bugs within Facebook and fix them. Now, the […]

(via Cult of Mac – Tech and culture through an Apple lens)


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