Former Intel Chairman, CEO: 'Steve Was Apple, Period'

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- On Monday morning, former Intel ( INTC) Chairman and CEO Craig Barrett made an appearance on CNBC that flew under the radar.

After discussing Facebook ( FB), CNBC asked Barrett what he thought about Apple's ( AAPL) present and future under Tim Cook.

Here are key bullet points from Barrett, taken directly from the CNBC video transcript of his appearance:
  • "I think Apple has done a fantastic job."
  • "Steve was Apple, period. He had great lieutenants working for him -- Mr. Cook, others -- but it was Steve Jobs."
  • "If the next level can step up, Tim can step and continue the product rollouts, then more power to them."
  • "Steve was really unique. He could take a product which was already in the marketplace, wrap a good user interface on it and market it when everybody else thought it was dead. When the iPod came out there were a million MP3 players out there . . . It was timing, packaging, the user interface. Steve did all of that exquisitely."

    If you didn't actually see that interview, it's worth checking out the video. Pay attention to Barrett's mannerisms.

    I would never put words in Barrett's mouth, but it's safe to assume, at the very least, he subscribes to the near-term bull, long-term uncertain case on Apple.

    Granted, I am a bit more bearish long-term, but I'm not the former chairman and CEO of Intel. So, in one respect, I have more leeway to say how I feel. The last thing Barrett wants to do is create a public relations dust-up like the one current chief Paul Otellini inadvertently started, according to Bloomberg, with Microsoft ( MSFT).

    At the same time, for every bit of confidence I have in my own thought processes, I understand if you put slightly more weight in what Barrett says. However you slice it, the (very well-deserved and spot-on) fawning he did over Jobs, with a "more power to" Cook and company if they can keep it up sandwiched in between, does not necessarily give off a bullish smell beyond the immediate product pipeline.

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