Apple software chief Bertrand Serlet steps down

Apple has confirmed that Senior VP of Mac Software Engineering Bertrand Serlet is to leave the company, having worked with CEO Steve Jobs for 22 years. Serlet was responsible for developing products both NeXT and Apple, and will be replaced by current VP Craig Federighi.

"At this point, I want to focus less on products and more on science" Serlet said; the executive holds a doctorate in Computer Science, but is yet to confirm his next project.

The news will likely refuel controversy over Apple's intentions toward OS X, which many have predicted will "dumb down" to the point where a more structured platform, like iOS, replaces it. The company is expected to release OS X Lion (aka OS X 10.7) later this year, having pushed out a developer preview back in February.

Press Release:

Bertrand Serlet to Leave Apple

CUPERTINO, California—March 23, 2011—Apple® today announced that Bertrand Serlet, Apple's senior vice president of Mac® Software Engineering, will be leaving the company. Craig Federighi, Apple's vice president of Mac Software Engineering, will assume Serlet's responsibilities and report to Steve Jobs, Apple's CEO. Federighi is responsible for the development of Mac OS® X and has been managing the Mac OS software engineering group for the past two years.

"I've worked with Steve for 22 years and have had an incredible time developing products at both NeXT and Apple, but at this point, I want to focus less on products and more on science," said Bertrand Serlet, Apple's senior vice president of Software Engineering. "Craig has done a great job managing the Mac OS team for the past two years, Lion is a great release and the transition should be seamless."

Federighi worked at NeXT, followed by Apple, and then spent a decade at Ariba where he held several roles including vice president of Internet Services and chief technology officer. He returned to Apple in 2009 to lead Mac OS X engineering. Federighi holds a Master of Science degree in Computer Science and a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the University of California, Berkeley.

Serlet joined Apple in 1997, and has been involved in the definition, development and creation of Mac OS X, the world's most advanced operating system. Before joining Apple, Serlet spent four years at Xerox PARC, then joined NeXT in 1989. Serlet holds a doctorate in Computer Science from the University of Orsay, France.