Two of Apple's top designers have left the company to begin work at Tesla. The announcements come just one day apart and do not reflect well on Apple's ability to retain talent.
Chris Lattner, the creator of Apple's Swift programming language,
his departure from Apple on Tuesday. Swift is an open source language used to create apps for Apple devices, so it's no surprise that Tesla wanted to pursue this kind of talent for their team. They published a
welcoming him that same day stating that he will be leading their
The second key employee to leave for Tesla is Matt Casebolt. Matt was a director of product design at Apple and worked on the Mac Pro and MacBook. He led the development of the MacBook Pro and its Touch Bar feature. The design team, led by Jony Ive, has typically had a very low turnover so Casebolt's move to Tesla is not a good sign for Apple's design future.
Apple is a big company with 116,000 employees so departures are bound to happen, but the growing trend of high profile workers leaving for other companies can only mean internal troubles. Apple added only 6,000 full-time jobs in 2016, way down from over 17,000 the year before.