Bill Gates: Microsoft ‘remains the overall industry leader, Apple has done a fantastic job in music’

“Microsoft Corp. is grappling with ‘a lot of smart competitors,’ including Google and Apple, who are ahead of the Redmond company in some key markets, Bill Gates acknowledges,” Todd Bishop reports for The Seattle Post-Intelligencer. “But the Microsoft chairman on Tuesday said his company remains the overall industry leader, and he compared the current rivalries to legendary ones with Lotus, Novell and WordPerfect — situations in which the Redmond company ultimately overcame steep odds to prevail. ‘At any point in our history, we’ve had competitors who were better at doing something,’ Gates said in an interview with the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, underscoring the fact that it wouldn’t be unprecedented to come from behind now.”

Gates also said, “Right now, because of the breadth of what we do, we have that in many areas. Nokia is way ahead of us in phones; we’re closing the gap. Sony is ahead of us in video games. We’re just on the verge of something (the Xbox 360) that will help us close the gap there. In Web search, Google is the far-away leader. Big honeymoon for them. Even if they do ‘me, too’ type stuff, people think, ‘wow.’ And Apple in music has done a fantastic job.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Note Gates’ attempt to pretend that Apple is only ahead of Microsoft in “music.” Or he’s being his usual condescending self towards Apple and Steve Jobs. Apple isn’t only ahead of Microsoft in music, which we Mac OS X and iLife users all know, as does he.

Why does Gates ignore Apple’s Mac OS X? Simply because he knows that he and his company are the kings of “me, too type stuff” and he doesn’t want anyone to get any ideas about Apple Macs being so far ahead because consumers can buy one now with Mac OS X Tiger, but they can’t yet get a PC with Microsoft’s paper Tiger, Windows Vista. Gates is delusional if he thinks he can turn his Titanic as quickly and nimbly as Steve Jobs’ Apple. Of course, we’re sure that Microsoft will again succeed in marketing the so-called “come from behind” idea with enough money to convince a lot of people.

In no time at all, Mac users will have Windows people asking them:
Why does Apple call gadgets, “Widgets?” Why does Apple always have to be different and use a different name? “Trash” instead of recycle bin, “Dock” instead of sidebar; it never ends, what’s wrong with Apple?

The only thing wrong with Apple is the fact that they have Mac OS X and iLife and they haven’t told the average person about them and all that they can do. At least show people what your superior products look like, Mr. Jobs, so people will be able to see how Microsoft tries to follow wherever Apple leads. Apple have left the door open for Microsoft to launch Vista, proclaim it “innovative and new,” and have nobody outside of a few tech media folks and Mac OS X users question their claims for a second. Are you going to let them get away with it yet again, Mr. Jobs?

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Microsoft debuts Dashboard Widgets, er, ‘Microsoft Gadgets’ – September 13, 2005
Microsoft appropriates Apple’s ‘brushed metal’ look for Office 12 for Windows – September 13, 2005
Windows czar Allchin says Apple copying Microsoft’s Windows Longhorn – April 27, 2005
Microsoft employees leaving due to (and blogging about) malaise smothering company – April 25, 2005
eWEEK Editor Coursey: Longhorn so far ‘looks shockingly like a Macintosh’ – April 25, 2005
Due in late 2006, many of Windows Longhorn’s features have been in Mac OS X since 2001 – April 25, 2005
Microsoft’s new mantra: ‘It Just Works’ ripped straight from Apple’s ‘Switch’ campaign – April 22, 2005
Apple CEO Steve Jobs on Microsoft’s Longhorn: ‘They are shamelessly copying us’ – April 21, 2005
Microsoft’s Windows Longhorn will bear more than just a passing resemblance to Apple’s Mac OS X – April 15, 2005
Silicon Valley: Apple CEO Steve Jobs previews ‘Longhorn’ – June 29, 2004
Apple CEO Steve Jobs: Mac OS X Tiger ‘is going to drive the copycats crazy – June 28, 2004
Apple’s CEO Steve Jobs previews Mac OS X 10.4 ‘Tiger’ to ship in the first half of 2005 – June 28, 2004
Apple takes dead aim at Microsoft, ‘Longhorn’ with WWDC Mac OS X 10.4 ‘Tiger’ ads – June 28, 2004
PC Magazine: Microsoft ‘Longhorn’ preview shows ‘an Apple look’ – May 06, 2004
Microsoft concerned that Longhorn’s look and feel will be copied if revealed too soon – August 25, 2003
Windows ‘Longhorn’ to add translucent windows that ripple and shrink by 2005 – May 19, 2003
Apple leads; Wintel follows as usual – November 11, 2002


  1. “‘At any point in our history, we’ve had competitors who were better at doing something,’ Gates said”

    This sentence sums it up for me. He pretty much admits that even though the competitors are better, microsoft wins. Now I wonder how that could be? Unfair business practices? Naaaw – couldn’t be.

    What a slime ball. I am so glad there is an Apple so I don’t have to suffer through using the “good enough” junk he foists on the unknowing consumers. What is amazing to me is that so many people accept the self perpetuating garbage myth marketing that M$ shovels out.

  2. MS has alot of money and with it, they copy everything they need. They dopn’t need much in house r&d stuff, Apple are doing it all for them. They r&d stuff they do focus on is drm type stuff, to lock stuff in or out. They suck.

  3. I lose a lot of business in my industry to the exact same tactics from my competitors. It never ceases to amaze me how much BS people will believe. Their “friend” used so and so so he must be the best. The thing is even if the “friend” had a bad experience with that other company the “friend” would never admit it. They don’t want to admit that they got screwed. They don’t want the other friend to end up with a better product than the one the got ripped off with. Human behavior is sickening in so many ways.

  4. Todd Bishop reports for The Seattle Post-Intelligencer: “But the Microsoft chairman on Tuesday said his company remains the overall industry leader…”

    For the time being…

    MaWo: ‘child’. As in: Bill Gates can keep posturing to make himself feel better all he wants, but his self-denial and petulant behavior is no better than that of a child.

  5. Where would M$ be without Apple? If Apple had disappeared 8 years ago, before OS X, M$ would not be any further along than windows 3. They have no imagination. No wonder they invested in Apple years ago. “Thank you Apple. Now we know what direction to go, where the industry is headed, and what’s really cool. Not only are you our R&D, you are our market tester and risk taker.”

  6. Either way, things are far different than they were 4 years ago. Think of the millions of Windows users that now have Apple iPods (and therefore also have Apple’s iTunes & QuickTime software installed on their Windows PCs as well). While I agree that Apple hasn’t done enough to get the word out about OS X, it’s obvious that the average consumer out there today is far more aware of Apple than at any time since the mid 1980s.

  7. “…But the Microsoft chairman on Tuesday said his company remains the overall industry leader, and he compared the current rivalries to legendary ones with Lotus, Novell and WordPerfect — situations in which the Redmond company ultimately overcame steep odds to prevail…”

    And just how did they accomplish this? It was by unethical and often patently illegal bundling. Microsoft has been scurrying around settling all of the patent infringement lawsuits against them, at a total cost exceeding several billion dollars now. I’ll bet this is part of the settlement with the DOJ.

  8. Gates: “Ever since I put out the big security memo talking about that as our top priority, we’ve been gaining a lot of respect for how seriously we’re taking it, and the steps we’ve taken.”

    BWAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! That is so so funny Bill!

    P.S. You’re an idiot.

  9. Gates always tries to talk down/gloss over Apple’s superiority in, well, everything. Microsoft got where it is today not through superior products, but because of its original licensing deal with IBM.

    And people don’t *choose* Windows, they get lumped with it when they buy a PC. This will change when Apple finally licenses out OS X.

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