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Apple and Tim Cook Critics, It's Time to Shut Up

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- For my reaction to the news that Apple (AAPL) finalized its deal for Beats Electronics see Tim Cook Just Took Apple Away From Steve Jobs.

In the present article, we expand on the notion that this is now Tim Cook's Apple.

I know it's not socially acceptable to say, but Steve Jobs missed on Apple's digital music strategy. And Tim Cook's about to fix his predecessor's mistakes.

Apple made the iTunes Store a one-trick pony for far too long. Jobs was well aware of Pandora (P). In fact, prior to the launch of iPhone, he hosted the company in Cupertino, putting them through rigorous rehearsals so Pandora could be on stage for the pomp and circumstance and to demo how a great app functions. But Jobs never thought -- or at least never acted on the thought if he had it -- to either buy Pandora or create one of his own. He didn't vision streaming as the future. As the way people would want to consume music before they knew that was the way they wanted to consume music. Granted -- it's easy to say in hindsight, but, any way you sever it, Jobs dropped the ball.

Apple's response to what amounts to a Steve Jobs' error ended up being iTunes Radio, which came several years late. Pandora was long past the point of exploding onto the scene (thanks, ironically, to Apple's iPhone) before Apple got around to debuting a streaming product. A streaming product that, thus far, has failed to do what Apple intended -- keep sales of music downloads alive.

So, pursuant to the underwhelming start for iTunes Radio, Apple scrambled. It needed to do something. Would it create it's own subscription-based streaming service (something Jobs apparently never believed in) or would it pick off an existing platform? It decided to go the M&A route.

And that's where the Steve Jobs story ends and the Tim Cook era -- unfettered and minus the Jobsian overhang -- begins.


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