Scott Forstall should be the next Microsoft CEO

In the wake of Steve Ballmer's weird, twelve-months-in-advance retirement announcement, Microsoft is in desperate need of a strong and visionary CEO. They need a Steve Jobs.

It just so happens that Apple just recently fired the person in the company the most like Steve Jobs, Scott Forstall.

Here's where the parallels between Jobs and Forstall get weird: Forstall was ripped from his pet project (iOS) and banished to an outer consulting position (Jobs in 1985) after a new CEO was appointed to Apple (Cook/Sculley).

Scott Forstall as the new Microsoft CEO.

Think about it. That could be awesome.

— Marco Arment (@marcoarment) August 25, 2013

There is no doubt that Forstall must be disillusioned and could have every reason to be bitter when the company he helped make billions of dollars with the iPhone turns around and gets rid of him. Accepting a position as CEO for Apple's long-standing rival would be the perfect revenge. Forstall was rumored to 'not work well with others', but maybe Forstall doesn't work well under others because, much like Jobs in his early days at Apple, he needs to be the head cook (no pun intended) in the kitchen.

Ben Thompson eloquently explains how Microsoft has just undergone a massive reorganization which shapes the company very similar in the way Apple does, a functional organization where collaboration and innovation reign. Microsoft has a chance to get back to the reason for it's original success: focusing on an innovative product that has a genuine impact on real people.

I am not suggesting that Microsoft should try to imitate Apple, change their own identity, or hire Forstall and start the copiers. I am saying that they have a chance to make a clean break with the passive, bland, and uninspiring ten years leading up to this point.

Microsoft needs another brilliant, visionary software genius like Gates, and Scott Forstall is exactly that. They need a radical re-ignition of the old flame and they need someone who can make the bureaucratic, braaaaaand-marketeer heads roll. They need a Steve Jobs-type strong leader who can cut through the red tape and bring an innovation resurrection.

On the other hand, Forstall is most likely bound by an insanely lengthy NDA because he most likely knows several years of future planned Apple products, and the chances of Microsoft actually offering him a position are slim to none so this whole idea may be a romanticized pipe dream. But as Marco Arment said:

It would be a hell of a story.

— Marco Arment (@marcoarment) August 25, 2013