“By most measures, Apple Computer Inc.’s Steve Jobs famous unveilings in front of staunch loyalists would be a tough act to follow. Imagine then, going head-to-head with the legendary CEO. That’s what Michael Dell, chairman of Dell Inc. and a legend himself, was up against Tuesday,” May Wong reports for The Associated Press.

“The two influential leaders delivered keynotes simultaneously — Jobs at the Macworld Conference & Expo in San Francisco and Dell at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas,” Wong reports.

Wong reports, “The auditorium hosting Jobs’ keynote held 4,000 people and still wasn’t large enough. Given the sold-out crowd, many more were sitting cross-legged and kneeling in the aisles with rapt attention as Jobs, always the consummate showman, joked with the audience and debuted a highly anticipated cell phone and set-top box, which he called ‘revolutionary.’ The ballroom hosting Dell’s keynote also had a capacity of 4,000 people but was barely half full.”

Wong reports, “As a co-founder of Apple, Jobs has always been considered a leader of a cult of sorts, a loyal group of Macintosh fans, and anyone in his presence is subject to his ‘reality distortion field.’ Windows-based PC users, on the other hand, are typically not as fanatical about their machines.”

MacDailyNews Take: There is a reason for that and everybody, including May Wong, knows it- even if they won’t report it.

Wong continues, “Dell, meanwhile, introduced a new environmental ‘Plant a Tree for Me’ program in which it offered to plant a tree for every PC sold.”

MacDailyNews Take: Yawn. How, uh, obsequious of him; in a non-riveting, yet totally transparent sort of way. Joining Greenpeace, Mikey? Care to contribute a little something or have you already? Hey, when’s the next Apple Store picket?

Wong continues, “In an interview after his speech, Dell said he wasn’t worried about his company’s news getting overshadowed by the media attention for Apple. ‘I think our announcements are going to get the recognition they deserve,’ he said.”

MacDailyNews Take: Exactly. Crickets chirping.

Wong continues, “The two trade shows are booked years in advance. CES typically begins the first week of January, and Macworld the second week. Often in the past, the tail end of CES coincides with the beginning of Macworld. But this year, Jobs’ opening keynote landed on the second day of CES.”

“Gary Shapiro, president and chief executive of the Consumer Electronics Association, said the organization decided many years ago to start pushing down the opening date of CES to allow its thousands of exhibitors more breathing room following the New Year,” Wong reports. “Shapiro said the association has invited Jobs to deliver a keynote at CES in the past. ‘Steve Jobs turned it down,’ Shapiro said, ‘but he said he’d be happy to come if we change the date.'”

Full article here.
Let’s see: attend a keynote presented by some dime-a-dozen Windows-centric box assembler or a keynote by the man who defined the personal computer industry and who is rapidly taking over the CE industry? What a tough choice.

So, every day is Arbor Day at Dell? Kudos, Mikey. Now get back to work kissing your market share buh-bye while figuring out how you’re going to sell the company and give the money back to the shareholders.

Related article:
Total eclipse of Michael Dell happens next Tuesday – January 04, 2007