Cringley: Apple’s Safari for Windows is about AT&T

“Microsoft is not threatened by the announcement of Safari for Windows. Bill Gates isn’t pissed off that Apple has challenged him. Gates is worried about Firefox, not Safari, and even Firefox is just a minor annoyance or else Microsoft would be doing a better job of competing with it,” Robert X. Cringley writes for PBS.

“Beyond garnering some press, Safari for Windows is about AT&T. Steve Jobs is the best salesperson in the entire universe, but he doesn’t like to waste his time. That means that, having seduced AT&T (nee Cingular), Steve will try to sell them more and more stuff until they have bought everything he has. He will invent stuff specifically to sell to AT&T as long as it acts as a bridge to yet more stuff he wants to sell them,” Cringley writes.

“Steve wants AT&T to see him not just as the answer to their prayers, but as the answer to their EVERY prayer… Here is the complex package of goods Apple is trying to sell to AT&T: There’s the iPhone, of course, but there is also the Apple TV as a potential set-top box. Three hundred dollars for a set-top box? You have to be crazy! Not so crazy. Compared to not spending the kind of money Verizon is spending on fiber, Apple TVs are cheap even if AT&T gives them away,” Cringley writes.

“This move isn’t about taking down Microsoft, it isn’t about making Macintosh computers the dominant computing platform, it IS about performing a massive cashectomy on AT&T. But to Apple’s credit the company doesn’t want anyone to see this as theft, but rather as a technical triumph, simply because when AT&T’s exclusive is over in five years, Apple will want to do similar deals with all of AT&T’s competitors,” Cringley writes.

Much more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Bob,” “LinuxGuy and Mac Prodigal Son,” and “Kevin G.” for the heads up.]
Cringely, while always entertaining, could well be quite wrong about the threat Safari poses to Microsoft. “With 18.6 million Safari users currently, according to Jobs’ in his WWDC Keynote, and some percentage of Windows Safari users to come, with the Mac user base growing nicely, plus all iPhone users on Safari, we’re looking at 100 million or more Safari users within 30 months… Steve Jobs, by releasing Safari to Windows, has laid the foundation for the next major computing platform which will be Web-based, built for Safari, mobile, and Apple’s.” – SteveJack, MacDailyNews, June 12, 2007. Full article here.


  1. Is Safari is so important, why can’t Apple put in a sidebar? IE and Firefox have had them for years. Apple can’t do something similar?

    Right now Safari is a second rate browser without a sidebar and it will remain that way. Who cares if it loads pages a few seconds sooner? I have so many tabs opened, I don’t care. I open all my pages before I start reading so I have no wait time.

    Give us a sidebar, Apple. Do it now.

  2. Lets not forget that the iPhone requires Safari for it’s bookmarks, Ajax appz, blah, blah. Believe it or not, Windows users will buy the iPhone. Hence they need iTunes, Quicktime & Safari. This is a MUST MOVE for Apple.

  3. One of the great side benefits of dethroning Microsoft from its monopoly position would be the burial of dumb-asses like Cringely, Dvorak, Enderle, Scoble and Thurrott. Their connection to Windows reporting is the only possible explanation for their “industry analyst” status, and they take up way too much web commentary time and space.

  4. Even with 100 million of copies of Safari in the next 30 months, that still equals less than 10% market-share for browsers… I don’t always agree with Cringely, but in this case, I think he’s right.. Safari is not much of a threat to MS.

  5. People, (trolls excluded ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”grin” style=”border:0;” /> ),

    Remember, its Steve Jobs we are talking about. There is a PLAN here. It may not be our plan but I think it started way back when he said that Microsoft was not the enemy. He had a plan.

    As more and more people are exposed to the Apple approach, more and more get hooked. More and more move over. Maybe not now, maybe not tommorow, but soon and forever after. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”grin” style=”border:0;” />

    Its a slow stepping plan. One sneaky step at a time. If you want to clobber a giant, you do not stand in front of him and scream. You sneak up from behind and when the time is right. BAMB.

    When you think iPhone, think Safari, Google apps, ease of use, security, everywhere, easy of use, everywhere, uniform approach, easy to use and learn, . . . . . e v e r y w h e r e!!!!

    One step at a time. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”grin” style=”border:0;” />

    en – ne, sometimes I get them mixed up. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”grin” style=”border:0;” />
    MDN word, stay. as in stay tuned for more and more great news.

  6. I spend… too much time in a web browser, all day, every week day. But I stopped using bookmarks years ago. Typing what I’m after into the Google search box or the URL line is, for me, much faster than using bookmarks. I do have a handful of them in my bookmarks toolbar, but I often forget to use them because I just type them in. The browser fills in the “http://www.” automatically, and chances are I’ve been there already and the rest gets filled in for me.

    So, I guess I just don’t understand why people need bookmarks.

  7. Q. What made Bell/AT&T so great back in the day?

    A. R&D and the products it produced.

    If AT&T still has an R&D department, I have not heard anything from them in YEARS. Apple gladly has become a contract R&D/innovation department. The difference is, at the end of the day, Apple owns the patents & technology, and will reap the recurring revenue for years to come.

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