Skip to comments.Tech Rivals Wage War of Words
Posted on 10/20/2010 8:08:30 AM PDT by SmokingJoe
Top technology executives found themselves in another round of back-biting this week, after Apple Inc. Chief Executive Steve Jobs went out of his way to publicly criticize his competitors and their products.
Jim Balsillie, co-chief executive at BlackBerry maker Research In Motion Ltd., fired back Tuesday, saying in an emailed message that he thinks "many customers are getting tired of being told what to think by Apple."
Mr. Jobs made a surprise appearance on Apple's quarterly earnings call Monday for the first time in two years. After briefly highlighting the success of the iPhone, Mr. Jobs went straight for RIM, arguing that Apple had sold more iPhones in the latest quarter than RIM had sold BlackBerrys.
"We've now passed RIM, and I don't see them catching up," Mr. Jobs said. He then argued it was going to be tough for RIM to create a competitive software platform and convince developers to make applications for it.
The Apple CEO also criticized a slate of seven-inch tablet computersone made by RIM emerging as competitors to the iPad. "This size isn't sufficient to create great tablet apps in our opinion," Mr. Jobs said. The iPad has a 9.7-inch screen.
Mr. Balsillie responded in kind. "For those of us who live outside of Apple's distortion field, we know that 7-[inch] tablets will actually be a big portion of the market," he said. "We also know that while Apple's attempt to control the ecosystem and maintain a closed platform may be good for Apple, developers want more options."
(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...
"Google loves to characterize Android as open and iOS and iPhone as closed," he said. But that's a "smokescreen to hide the real issue of what is best for the customer: integrated versus fragmented."
After the comments, Google's Android chief, Andy Rubin, took to Twitter for the first time to defend Android in a compressed retort only a geek could love, or even understand: "the definition of open: 'mkdir android ; cd android ; repo init -u git://android.git.kernel.org/platform/manifest.git ; repo sync ; make'"
A Google spokeswoman said Mr. Rubin's message is a computer command to download the Android source code and start developing.
The message lists the commands needed to start creating a copy of Android on a computer running the Linux operating system.
Meanwhile, a developer caught up in this week's crossfire also weighed in. Mr. Jobs cited the example of TweetDeck, a program used by people to access Twitter, to argue that Android fragmentation is a problem for app developers. But Iain Dodsworth, CEO of TweetDeck, took to Twitter to defend Android.
"Did we at any point say it was a nightmare developing on Android? Errr nope, no we didn't. It wasn't," he wrote. Later he added, "We only have two guys developing on Android TweetDeck so that shows how small an issue fragmentation is."
When the guy who made “TwitterDeck” basically had to call him out on it, that should have shut down the whole stupid discussion.
But goodness knows there are enough iNutters out there that they will swallow anything that he says.
Now stand by for the usual “but, but Apple made “X” dollars in the last quarter” responses.
I laugh when people idolize him. Jobs is obviously a brilliant marketer, but that's it. Normally, that would be enough, but not for him. He's morphed himself into every possible reflection of whatever people want to think best of personal computers and Apple.
But it's all marketing - that's what he does.
That, and cut deals for himself, provide personal surveillance platforms by the millions, and stomp others in the name of peace. Oh, and lead the charge in getting rid of keyboards as a fundamental concept. He's not a nice guy, and he's not as subtle as he thinks he is. But he's great at marketing himself as a genius, and he makes a lot of money doing it. And in most people's minds, that forgives everything.
So as long as there's no higher law, he's free and clear.
I love the whole “fragmentation!” FUD thrown about. It’s no worse than developing for Windows or OSX - you have different OS versions, with different hardware. It’s easy to do, as long as you properly virtualize your hardware-dependent data and calls.
Developers have dealt with “fragmentation” for decades, and to say they cannot do so now is a slam by Steve. I guess those “apps” (can’t we just call them what they are - programs?) he touts were written by slack-jawed mouth-breathers who can’t do anything other than push a few buttons!
There is NO problem with “fragmentation” other than it gives consumers choice, and that’s something that Apple simply does not provide.