Tim Cook has been a part of Apple for almost 25 years and is in his tenth year as the company's CEO. A lot has happened with Apple in those ten years since he took over for late founder Steve Jobs. However, as much of a wild ride as it's been, Cook does not anticipate to be working as the company's CEO ten years from now.
"Ten more years, probably not," Cook said on the New York Times' Sway podcast. "But I can tell you that I feel great right now. And the date's not in sight. But ten more years is a long time and probably not ten more years."
While Cook doesn't have an exact timetable for any potential departure, his admission that his exit will eventually come should have people speculating on who could be next to fill his shoes. According to a September Bloomberg report (via 9to5Mac), Apple has already begun work on succession planning. Current COO Jeff Williams is expected to eventually take over for Cook, but a new class of top managers are being cultivated to help lead Apple in the future.
While Cook doesn't expect to be Apple's CEO by 2031, that's not to say he's planning his exit anytime soon. Swisher asked Cook about what he would potentially do if he wasn't running Apple, to which the CEO admitted uncertainty.
"I don't have a clue, because I love this company so much, that it's hard to imagine my life without it," Cook added. "And so I don't think I will know that until after I'm not here. Because I think I'll run so fast that I'll never really think about it until I'm not running anymore."
The Sway podcast with Tim Cook touched on a variety of topics beyond his potential exit as CEO, such as Apple's current lawsuit with Epic Games, competing with Facebook, privacy concerns, technological advances, and Apple's future. The full podcast is available for free on the New York Times website or through your preferred podcast provider.