Why Steve Jobs' leave of absence from Apple won't matter – but everyone will think it will

Earlier today Steve Jobs sent a message to all Apple employees which followed up a statement he made last month about his health:


I am sure all of you saw my letter last week sharing something very personal with the Apple community. Unfortunately, the curiosity over my personal health continues to be a distraction not only for me and my family, but everyone else at Apple as well. In addition, during the past week I have learned that my
health-related issues are more complex than I originally thought.

In order to take myself out of the limelight and focus on my health, and to allow everyone at Apple to focus on delivering extraordinary products, I have decided to take a medical leave of absence until the end of June.

I have asked Tim Cook to be responsible for Apple’s day to day operations, and I know he and the rest of the executive management team will do a great job. As CEO, I plan to remain involved in major strategic decisions while I am out. Our board of directors fully supports this plan.

I look forward to seeing all of you this summer.


What happens next:

The market will crucify Apple’s share price. The markets are full of dingbat traders who think Steve Jobs is Apple and who all believe the hype that he creates around his appearances and keynotes.

What really happened:

Steve Jobs has imbued his company with so much of himself and his ideas that, like the movie, he has created a veritable army of Spartacus’s. They know what to do. Apple already has amazing momentum, especially with the iPhone. Sales of Macs are up. iTunes will become more powerful not less because of the end of DRM, simply because of its ease of use and it’s ability to sync with the iPhone/iPod – people like that and it’s not going away.

Why June is important:

Jobs says he’ll be back in June. June is when the iPhone product cycle turns over. The rumours are that Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Ltd and United Microelectronics Corp. are set to benefit from chip orders for a new version of the iPhone. There are already signs that there will be a new version of the old iPhone (better camera, flash, video, software update) and probably a different version, which some dub the iPhone Nano, which will be more of a feature phone than a smartphone and be aimed at the broader consumer market because it will be smaller. At this point Apple’s share price will sky rocket again.

[Picture: Pocket-lint]