Yesterday I did not have the chance to blog about the “our product is sooooo much better” spat going on between Apple’s Steve Jobs, RIM’s (i.e., BlackBerry’s) Jim Balsillie, and Google’s Andy Rubin. It was discussed in yesterday’s WSJ in the Technology section (behind a paywall).
The odd start seems to be Steve Jobs’ odd public attacks on his competitors at his odd (first time in two years) appearance Apple’s Monday earnings call. His comments:
- “We’ve now passed RIM and I don’t see them catching up.”
- A 7″ tablet, such as RIM’s, “isn’t sufficient to create great tablet apps.”
- Google’s claim that the Android OS is open and that Apple’s iOS and iPhone are closed is a “smokescreen to hide the real issue of what is best for the customer: integrated versus fragmented.” Mr. Jobs apparently cited the TweetDeck app as an example of the difficulties fragmentation poses for developers.
- Jim Balsillie of RIM mentioned that, essentially, the rest of the world knows better about 7″ tablets, and “that Adobe Flash support actually matters to customers who want a real web experience.” (I would agree with Mr. Balsillie, here.)
- Google’s Andy Rubin responded with geeky elegance, tweeting “the definition of open: ‘mkdir android ; cd android ; repo init -u git://android.git.kernel.org/platform/manifest.git ; repo sync ; make'” (code guys get it)
- Even Iain Dodsworth, the CEO of TweetDeck, came out to defend Android, saying, “Did we at any point say it was a nightmare developing on Android? Errr nope, no we didn’t. It wasn’t.” And later, “We only have two guys developing on Android TweetDeck so that shows how small an issue fragmentation is.”
For those technophiles out there interested, the WSJ has a brief video (for free) that discusses the cat fight: “Clash of the Tech Titans Escalates” (not sure who would be the Kraken in this one).
Personally, I think it is a mix of dogma and bluster on Mr. Jobs’ part. Business bravado, if you will. I think David Carnoy at CNET is probably spot on.
And as much as I love my iPhone, I am keeping my eye on Android and the new tablets…