Steve Ballmer was interviewed by German newspaper “Die WELT” in an article published yesterday and some questions touched on Apple Computer, Inc. Martin Stein has provided an English translation on his weblog, “Martin Stein’s Publishing Weblog.”
Stein prefaces the Q&A section with, “After asking Steve if he has a ‘Apple Computer,’ he says that he does not have a Mac nor a iPod. ‘Of course, I have to know the devices. We have to know what the competitors do,’ [Ballmer said].”
Die WELT: But couldn’t you just buy a Mac without hesitation since Apple opened up their machines for Windows?
Ballmer: No, we prefer real PCs.
Die WELT: Was it a satisfaction that Apple had to give in?
Ballmer: Honestly, I don’t think that it is that important. Actually, it is relatively expensive if a user gets a separate Windows OS for his Mac. Not a lot of people will do this.
Die WELT: Apple is leading in the Music business as well. Does this bother you?
Ballmer: No question, it would have been better if the iPod would have been a Microsoft invention. The device is really popular. Apple didn’t invent anything new. They just combined existing technologies in a smart way. They succeeded to create a nice package which bundles Music services, devices and software.
Die WELT: Is Apple’s success reason enough to copy them?
Ballmer: This wasn’t the last word in this competition. Over the next years, a lot of things will happen in the market of portable devices. Who wants to carry different devices to listen to Music, to play games, to take pictures or to communicate with others? A small, integrated device will master many functions. We won’t be simply watching this development.
Die WELT: Is Apple unbeatable?
Ballmer: Which company would be able to compete with Apple at these days? It can only be Microsoft or Apple stays without any serious competitor. I think, everybody deserves some competition.
Stein’s full article here.
[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “LinuxGuy” for the heads up.]
Die WELT’s full article in German here.
MacDailyNews Take: Yes, Die WELT, Apple “gave in.” Whatever. Embrace, then extinguish. In a head-to-head Mac OS X vs. Windows XP comparison — exactly what users will get with new Macs with “Boot Camp” and soon, Mac OS X Leopard, running Windows and/or Windows applications — even with people steeped in Windows’ upside-down and backwards “experience” for years, we’re quite confident that we know which platform most people will choose to use most often.
So, Ballmer prefers “real PCs?” What is that supposed to mean? Ballmer should just state, “I am pompous know-nothing asshat.” It achieves the same purpose with a bit more clarity.
Oh, now Microsoft’s going to compete with iPod+iTunes? Haven’t they been trying to do so for the nearly half a decade since Apple debuted the iPod? With what exactly will Microsoft compete? Vapor? Some also-ran third-party online music outfit; aren’t hundreds of Microsoft WMA-based failures enough? That piece of crap Origami that even the OEM’s CEOs can’t figure out how to operate? Microsoft can’t even copy correctly; they never could. Microsoft can’t even get the warmed over, slipping-for-years, stripped-down mess Windows XP SP3 that they’re going to try to sell as “Windows Vista” out the door, towel-less Microsoft employees are on the verge of mutiny, Microsoft shares tumbled 11.4% on Friday, their biggest one-day drop in 5 years, and Ballmer thinks he can compete with a lean, mean Apple that been firing on all cylinders for years now? Ballmer, along with the vast majority of the world and most of Wall Street, are in for quite a shock. The jig is almost up, Monkey Boy. Enjoy your golden parachute ride.
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