Steve Jobs used to be the public face of Apple, but over the years, he began to give more executives stage time at the company's media events. One of those executives is Eddy Cue, Apple's senior vice president of Internet Software and Services — basically, Apple's iTunes and iCloud products. He will also take charge of the Beats music subscription service when that acquisition closes later this year.
At the Code Conference yesterday, Cue and Beats co-founder Jimmy Iovine sat down with Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher to discuss the future of Beats, the music industry, and Apple.
One of the most interesting statements came from Cue, who has been at Apple for 25 years and created Apple's online store in 1998, the iTunes Store in 2003, and then the App Store in 2008.
Surprising even the usually unflappable Walt Mossberg, Cue said that "we've got the best product pipeline that I've seen at Apple in my 25 years" with the company.
Mossberg noted that Eddy Cue's tenure covers Apple's rollouts of the iMac, iPod, iPhone, iPad, and MacBook Air — "all widely recognized as pretty good products."
"I agree with you," Cue responded. But he reiterated his initial statement, saying "I believe... the products that are coming are great."
This isn't the first time that an Apple executive has made a bold proclamation about upcoming products. Earlier this year, CEO Tim Cook said the company was working on "really great stuff," and that it was planning to enter new product categories during 2014.
Among other things, Apple is rumored to be working on a wearable iWatch product that could have extensive health and medicinal tracking purposes. It has also been examining television for years and could be looking at launching a new Apple TV set-top box complete with an App Store.
For business customers, recent rumors have said the company will roll out its Touch ID fingerprint security system to all iOS products, including iPads, in its yearly refresh this fall. The Touch ID feature built into the iPhone 5s makes it easy for users to lock down their devices with little to no time lost, in comparison to entering passwords and PIN numbers. Though the feature currently only unlocks the phone itself and speeds app and music purchases through Apple's digital stores, it's easy to see how Touch ID could be expanded to unlock VPN and other secure protocols.
Expanding Touch ID would be key for business customers looking to maximize security on mobile devices. For this reason, it might be beneficial to hold off purchasing Apple equipment until September or October, when new models are expected to be introduced.
Separately, Cue was asked about the legacy that Steve Jobs left at Apple. He was slightly defensive at the idea that Apple needed to have a "reset" after he left, saying that Jobs had left the company in good hands.
"I think he'd be extremely proud of all the work that we're doing today and the products that we're building," Cue said. "I think we're continuing a lot of the legacy that he built."
Will you be waiting to buy new Apple gear until the annual fall refresh? Let us know in the comments below.
Jordan Golson is an Apple Columnist for TechRepublic. He also writes about technology and automobiles for WIRED and MacRumors. He has worked for Apple Retail twice and has been writing about technology since 2007.