Lopp notes that while he was at Apple, the Caffe Macs chatter about Forstall was that he was the only legit successor to Jobs because he had some of the same characteristics.
● He was an asshole, but…
● Success seemed to surround him, and…
● No one was quite sure about the secret recipe to achieve this success.
Lopp says he was surprised to hear about Forstall's departure because he was the closest thing to a Steve Jobs left at Apple.
While I’d continued to hear about the disdain amongst the executive ranks about Forstall after I left Apple, I was still shocked about his departure, because while he was in no way Steve Jobs, he was the best approximation of Steve Jobs that Apple had left. You came to expect a certain amount of disruption around him because that’s how business was done at Apple - it was well-managed internal warfare. Innovation is not born out out of a committee; innovation is a fight. It’s messy, people die, but when the battle is over, something unimaginably significant has been achieved.
The concern is that Apple needs disruptors like Forstall to keep its edge and without that edge the company could begin to fall.