CNET reporter Brooke Crothers talks about the Apple fear factor, he noticed over the last year that many middle-level and high-ranking executives of tech companies are not at ease or even afraid to lose their jobs when talking about Apple:
Then, toward the end, the conversation turned to Apple--which is not unusual as Apple's tentacles are everywhere, particularly in the case of hardware. My question began something like: "So, I understand Apple is..." The response was remarkably consistent with past interviews. I quote from the mid-level manager: "I don't want to lose my job." I've heard variations on this job security theme during the last 12 months or so.
The angst is always palpable. When the interviewees quip something like "I like getting a paycheck every month," with a wry smile, they aren't joking. And these people don't even work for Apple.