An era is ending at Apple with Tony Fadell, the visionary for the ipod with contributions in iphone, leaving the company after 9 years. He was the adviser to Steve Jobs. He was the senior vice president and head of the iPod division for the company until November 2008. His departure from Apple was gradual with him stepping down from the senior vice president position, but Steve wanted him by his side as an adviser.
His contributions to the ipod are unheard of but are significant. Before working for Apple, Fadell envisioned a hard disk-based digital music player and started a company called Fuse in the 1990’s which could be seen as an early version of the iPod. Fadell took the idea to RealNetworks in 2000 but quit working with them in 6 weeks and went on to work as a contractor at first and then as a full time employee of Apple. He worked primarily for the special projects group heading the workings of the iPod. Fadell replaced Rubinstein as head of the iPod division in 2006.
Fadell says going ahead he will invest and work with green technology companies. “My primary focus will be helping the environment by working with consumer green-tech companies,” he said. “I’m determined to tell my kids and grandkids amazing stories beyond my iPod and iPhone ones.”
Interestingly, his departure comes at a point when Apple is about to release its iPad which evolved from the iPod and the iPhone. Apple did make sure that they signed a bunch of contracts with Fadell to ensure that the closely guarded Apple secrets remain such.