Steve Jobs biographer Isaacson: ‘Apple will settle Google Android dispute’

“Walter Isaacson, the man who wrote last year’s bestselling biography of Steve Jobs, has said that Apple’s ‘less emotional’ new boss Tim Cook will most likely settle a dispute with Google over the Android mobile operating system,” Andrew Laughlin reports for Digital Spy. “In a revealing interview this week, Isaacson also suggested that Apple will attempt to revolutionise the television and digital photography industries over the next few years.”

“Speaking at London’s Royal Institution yesterday evening, Isaacson discussed both the ‘petulance’ and ‘exuberance’ of Jobs, who died last October after losing his fight with pancreatic cancer,” Laughlin reports. “Published last year, Issacson’s Steve Jobs book revealed that the creator of the iPhone and iPad had threatened to “destroy” Google Android for allegedly copying Apple’s iOS.”

Laughlin reports, “He said that Cook is a very different leader to Jobs, and this means that he would most likely look to settle the legal row with Google over Android, rather than drag it out in the courts. ‘Steve was furious when he saw Microsoft stealing the Mac OS interface and licensing it to every PC maker who paid for it. So when Google licensed its Android mobile operating system so promiscuously to junkie handset makers he was determined to act,’ Isaacson was quoted as saying by PC Advisor. ‘Steve said to Google ‘You can’t pay me off. I’m here to destroy you’. But Tim Cook will settle that lawsuit. He’s a lot less emotional about business than Steve.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: It sure doesn’t sound like Steve was furious over Android just “for show” to us. And, there’s more than one way to skin an Android. High enough royalties will kill that derivative fragmented mess as surely as killing features due to patent infringement. If Microsoft could ever get their act together, they could benefit.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Fred Mertz” for the heads up.]

Related articles:
Mossberg reviews Microsoft’s Nokia Lumia 900, can’t recommend it over superior iPhone 4S – April 5, 2012
Google’s Larry Page: Steve Jobs’ fury over Android was ‘for show’ – April 4, 2012


    1. Isaacson may be a capable biographor, but that doesn’t necessarily translate to being a capable prognosticator.

      Hopefully, Tim Cook will carry out SJ’s wishes of releasing the ‘bunker busters’ on Google asap, and not think twice about it.

      Stolen IP is stolen IP. And stolen Apple IP is worthy of ‘thermonuclear’ retaliation.

      If T. Cook rolls over on this, he’ll be no better than John Sculley and deserves to have his a** handed to him on a paper plate. With a side of coleslaw. And an ‘RC cola’. And maybe, a ‘Hubig’s apple pie’; if he’s lucky.

      Sculley signed away the Apple family jewels once before. Cook had better not make the same mistake. If he does, Apple’s lead in the iPhone and iPad market is screwed six ways to Sunday. And *not* in a good way…

  1. Since when did Isaacson become an expert insider on Apple strategy. This guy will book an appearance with anyone and appear to know everything, just to keep sucking up that gravy train that fell into his lap. He failed badly on important areas of the book, and all this attention he is getting is because of Steve, and not from Isaacson’s great writing skills.

    1. The book showed he had zero clue about Apple and really very little insight into Jobs. There’s zero chance he understands Cook and if he’s right here it’s pure luck not based on any real wisdom.

      That said I hope Cook makes a terrifying example of Android and Google in such a fashion as to prevent other companies from attempting the same thing.

      1. Have you forgotten he was chosen by Steve to write the book and was given Laurene’s blessing. You don’ t what you are talking about. There is no such thing as a “perfectly” accurate bio, but Isaacson’s was a damn good one.

          1. Agree; on many key accounts Isaacson done lame job. This might be not completely intentional, though, since biography was released half year earlier than it supposed to be (as in case if Jobs would live until now).

        1. Not sure how a book about one of the greatest lives of our time could come off so lifeless — but it did.

          I finished it because it was about one of my most admired figures, but I was not entertained and I thought Isaacson rushed the damn thing, to be honest.

        2. Walter wrote through the eyes of a negative man on just about everything. He interviewed ex’s of apple which inevitably will give a tainted viewpoint. It’s a poor read unless you like that sort of take on life in general.

          1. Yes, He interviewed ex’s. He also interviewed Steve’s wife, children, co-workers, enemies, friends, Disney, Microsoft, Google,.. etc. etc… About 100 people in all, as it states in the intro.

      2. if Cook did not feel the same, the legal cases would become less spread not increased.

        “makes a terrifying example of Android… to prevent other companies from attempting the same.”

        Agreed – Android needs to be stopped.

      1. Yeh. The way he portrayed Steve made him sound like one of any million businessmen. There was no insight into what made Steve so exceptional. And Isaacson was obviously biased. He portrayed the conflicts between Steve and Gates as Steve being irrational and overly emotional and Gates being reasonable and thoughtful. Just one example of an ongoing slant.

        I waited and waited for it to go beyond the banal level of, “And then he sat down at the table and ate his toast” to something deep. Never happened. Eventually gave up reading.

  2. Couple of thoughts:

    First, Isaacson’s book was so bereft of insight, I have zero confidence that he is qualified to predict how Apple will resolve this dispute.

    Second, as MDN points out, if Apple wins a major patent battle (e.g. something related to touchscreen interpolation methodologies), then they can slap a fat royalty requirement on Android and call it settled. This approach makes more sense to me as Apple wants to use Android to keep MSFT out of the game; having two anemic morons fighting each other is preferable to one strong competitor.

  3. It’s hard for me to believe anything Walter Isaacson says when the few statements he makes that I can verify are wrong more often than not. I don’t know what happens in the inner circles of Apple or Jobs’s personal life, but I do know that OS X does utilize a lot of software from NextStep, and iPhoto isn’t a Photoshop competitor. If he publishes a book with so many technical errors which could have been easily corrected by checking with anyone knowledgeable about Apple software, why should I believe he does any type of reliable fact checking?

  4. i respectfully disagree with Walter. While Tim is certainly a more placid individual, I believe that he is no less passionate about Apple and Apple’s IP in his own way. Steve was a “damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead, run ’em through” type; Tim strikes me more as a “death by a thousand cuts” type. The end result – the death of Android – is no less certain, nor any less (in fact, if you like seeing bad guys suffer before they die, it’s likely MORE) satisfying.

    1. Yes, and let’s not confuse placid with flaccid when it comes to Tim Cook.

      Cook won’t sacrifice Apple’s focus to destroy Android, but that doesn’t mean he won’t honor the wishes of a man he clearly admired and owes his current position to. If I were Google, I’d be sweating.

    2. There was evidence that Steve Jobs tried to settle things quietly with Samsung and similar softer tactics concerning Android. IN addition, Apple had also offered some licensing of particular iOS functionality to companies like Nokia. It was only later, once Jobs saw Android gaining, did he decided to go nuclear.

  5. I don’t think that Isaacson is calling this one correctly.

    It seems pretty obvious that Jobs was furious and Cook feels the same way. If Cook didn’t believe that fighting Google’s infringements were worth pursuing in court, then he would not be wasting so much money doing so.

    Apple needs to protect it’s IP and also send unambiguous messages to any companies thinking of stealing Apple’s innovations. The courts may not be the ideal means for doing this, but they are the only practical option.

  6. Hoping Tim Cook will not settle easily.
    Licensing portions of Multi-Touch and other patents to Google or Microsoft must be set extremely high – so high they will not bother. Similarly so should Oracle set the bar.

    Google laughed at a phone with Siri… then gained functionality … now they are looking into Goggles – that what innovation should have taken them years ago. Voice over a touch UI. Eye recognition UI. There are other options.

  7. MDN: If Microsoft could ever get their act together, they could benefit.

    Isn’t MS already profiting from most of the Android hardware makers, in that they are paying licensing fees to MS to use MS IP contained in Android?

    Those MS fees are already putting the hurt on “free” Android.

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