Google CEO on Apple’s board opens up many possibilities, including outdueling Microsoft

“When Eric E. Schmidt, Google’s chief executive, was named to Apple Computer’s board this week, it did more than signal a potential alliance between powerful companies. It touched off a wave of speculation about the motives of the man behind the move: Apple’s co-founder, Steven P. Jobs,” John Markoff reports for The New York Times.

“‘The old social networks in Silicon Valley run very deep,’ noted AnnaLee Saxenian, a leading scholar of the industry and dean of the School of Information at the University of California, Berkeley. ‘And this reminds us that Silicon Valley has a common enemy to the north.’ She did not even need to name the enemy she had in mind: Microsoft, the leading rival to both Mr. Jobs and Mr. Schmidt through most of their careers. Now, with the Internet era remaking the competitive landscape, their prospects for outdueling Microsoft’s Windows empire may be better than ever,” Markoff reports.

“There are many possibilities for a complementary strategy between their companies. This week, for example, Google announced that it was beginning to weave together a number of services that could be a Web-based competitor to Microsoft Office. And Mr. Jobs has skillfully driven a wedge into the dominant PC computing standard established by Microsoft’s Windows software and Intel’s hardware — the so-called Wintel alliance — by recently adopting Intel’s processor for Apple’s Macintosh computers,” Markoff reports.

Markoff reports, “Mr. Schmidt’s appointment set off chatter about linking the Google search engine to iTunes, Apple’s online music service — reinforcing Apple’s pre-eminence in a category where Microsoft is seeking a grip. That would also have broader implications for the entertainment industry, an industry repeatedly put on the defensive by both Apple and Google.”

Full article here.

Related articles:
Re: Google CEO elected to Apple Computer’s Board of Directors – August 30, 2006
Dvorak: Does Apple’s board addtion of Google’s Schmidt portend Apple-Sun merger? – August 30, 2006
Apple and Google cozy up to make Microsoft jealous – August 30, 2006
Google CEO to help shape Apple’s future – August 30, 2006
Google CEO Dr. Eric Schmidt joins Apple’s Board of Directors – August 29, 2006


  1. The problem with people thinking that this will have a significant effect on Apple is they have completely forgotten history. Apple has had boardmembers from companies that have done little or nothing positive for Apple. Just think of Intuit and its CEO.

  2. The only thing we need for any new board member to do for Apple is to get the company refocused on customer service and a recommitment to innovation and excellence in products and services.

    Stop the marketing machine and restart the emphasis on performance and quality.

    I realize that board members tend to be more concerned about stockholders than anyone else, but taking the loyal customer base for granted is a blunder that will spell disaster for shareholders.

    Participants in this forum will rail against this comment but you need to hear it anyhow: When MS finally releases Vista, no matter when and no matter how awful it might be, it will capture the media, sweep the world, and the light Apple has enjoyed this year will be dimmed.

    The ONLY way Apple can contend with this reality is to take care of its fiercely loyal customers and quit taking advantage of us with delayed improvements to software, and weak performance improvements in its machinery.

  3. Just imagine, if google can go from a tiny company to a 100billion company in less than 5years, you know there is something missing on earth, FAIR COMPETITION.

    take a look at adobe, they bought macromedia, now there is no decent tool to edit photos with, basicly the way the system is working right now is, you either get it all or nothing at all, and this type of system can not survive forever, it will evantually become blured and more companies will show up such as myspace and youtube and many many others, in the end google will lose power and so will everyone else.

    in other words itunes keeping up with 85% of music industry share is very unlikely, once you are on top there is only 1 direction to go to.

  4. Apple associating itself with google is for 1 reason only, ADVERTISING INCENTIVES, which means Apple will ultimately have to kiss Google’s ass, while Google kisses Apples ass, both assuming they will take over the world together, the same way AOL and TIME WARNER thought they would, and this self-contained-distraction will result in them living in a bubble sort of like microsoft and as a result there will be 1000’s of other companies that were anti apple and 1000’s of other companies that were anti google to come together and start new companies, which will result in stiff competition and ultimately apple’s shares will fall to $30 or less and google’s shares will fall to $200 or less.

  5. While I am excited about the future of Apple I have a dark cloud of doubt lingering over my head with shaddows of Enron.

    Could Steve Jobs taking less of a up-front role in WWDC and Eric Schmidt be a prelude to a resignation because of the stock issues? Could it be that these moves are Steve’s way of preparing for a worse case situation?

    Please tell me I am crazy! Please slap me and awaken me from my nightmare!

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