Apple CEO Tim Cook emerges from Steve Jobs’ prodigious shadow

“Apple CEO Tim Cook has long seen as the humorless and unemotional guy running the show from behind the scenes,” Peter Svensson reports for The Associated Press. “But he is beginning to reveal a more assertive and eloquent side, hinting that he’s learning to shoulder more of Steve Jobs’ role as a front man and leader.”

“On a conference call with journalists and financial analysts late Tuesday, Cook showed some fire when talking about competitors, echoing the combative Jobs,” Svensson reports. “He also spouted a vivid metaphor that spread like wildfire over Twitter before the call was over.”

Svensson reports, “on Tuesday, when asked if PCs and tablets might someday blend into one device, like rival PC manufacturers hope, Cook extemporized this response: ‘I think anything can be forced to converge. The problem is that products are about tradeoffs, and you begin to make tradeoffs to the point where what you have left at the end of the day doesn’t please anyone. You can converge a toaster and a refrigerator, but those things are probably not going to be pleasing to the user.'”

“The ‘toaster fridge combo'” phrase zoomed around Twitter, and within minutes, someone created a ‘FridgeToaster’ account that started talking back at Cook,” Svensson reports. “Microsoft spokesman Frank Shaw tweeted that Windows 8, the new software that’s supposed to bridge tablets and PCs, is ‘not a toaster/fridge. It’s a toaster/oven. Those seem pretty popular. Just saying.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Microsoft spokesman Frank Shaw is delusional. It’s a prerequisite for working in an insane asylum run by a…

Steve Ballmer dummy pretend iPad
 
As we wrote last spring:

Microsoft, in trying to cram everything into Windows 8 in an attempt to be all things to all devices, will end up with an OS that’s a jack of all trades and a master of none (which, after all, ought to be Microsoft’s company motto).

By the time this hybrid spawn of Windows Phone ’07 + Windows 7ista actually ships, one can only dream where Apple’s iOS and Mac OS X will be! For Microsoft, it’ll be more like a nightmare. Perhaps Microsoft will someday put some scare into Google’s Android/Chrome OS, but only time – and a lot of it when measured in tech time – will tell. We simply do not see the world clamoring for the UI of an iPod also-ran now ported to an iPhone wannabe that nobody’s buying to be blown up onto a PC display.

From what we’ve seen so far, Windows 8 strikes us as an unsavory combination of Windows Weight plus Windows Wait.

Not to mention that probably no one on earth knows how much or what kinds of residual legacy spaghetti code roils underneath it all (shudder). Is Microsoft giving up on backwards compatibility? If so, people might as well get the Mac they always wanted. If not, then Microsoft’s unwilling to do what it takes to really attempt to keep up with the likes of Apple or even Apple’s followers. No matter what, if Microsoft’s going to ask Windows sufferers to “learn a whole new computer” (and that’s exactly how they’ll look at it, regardless of how Microsoft pitches it), millions will simply say, “Time to get a Mac to match my iPod, iPhone, and iPad!”

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

Related articles:
MacDailyNews presents live notes from Apple’s Q212 Conference Call – April 24, 2012
My years at Microsoft: Frustration, disappointment and apathy – April 23, 2012

43 Comments

  1. I’m sure the toaster/oven will be usable, but as usual, it won’t come close to the Apple experience.

    I think the big difference this time (when compared to PCs), is that no manufacturer/software maker can come up with a “good enough” product that can substantially beat Apples prices (on the iPad, iPhone, iPod, etc.).

    1. Will it be usable? At least a toaster oven is a compromise between two somewhat similar cooking appliances.

      But how similar is a desktop PC to a tablet? Or a smartphone? I think the “toaser fridge” analogy nails it. Nobody wants a desktop OS on their tablet device, and I doubt anybody will be clamoring for a tablet OS on their desktop, either. Especially not if Metro is any indication.

  2. So Windows 8 is like a toaster over? Popular as they may be, I don’t think anyone recognizes a toaster oven as either a best in class oven or a best in class toaster. At best, it’s just good enough…which is about par for Microsoft.

  3. oh – emerges from the Shadows of Jobs?

    The convergence of products is inevitable – Cook is just trying to confuse the competition as it prepares iMacTv and a new product to fill the gaps for those who already have an iPhone and iPad.

    1. People with poor memory seem to forget that the so-called convergence of laptop and tablet has already been tried. I had a Windows CE device more than 12 years ago (called a Vadem Clio) that was actually pretty cool-looking; it could be used like a laptop (with its small but usable keyboard), and “folded” into a stylus-based tablet. And more recently (before iPad), there were still a few “convertible” laptop/tablet computers running full Windows; the screen spun around and folded down over the keyboard.

      None of those products were even remotely popular. You could argue that they were too heavy, or under-powered, or lacking in decent software (or any number of excuses). But that would be a false argument. If people actually desired such a “convergence” device, those previous attempts would have seen some level of success. Maybe not iPad-like success, but enough success to drive successive models, with progressive improvements. Instead, the few such products that were still around quickly disappeared after iPad was released.

      The forced convergence of laptop and tablet is not innovation or progress. It’s a desperate attempt at reviving an OLD idea, because nothing else has worked to compete against iPad. And Apple’s competition will do it (especially after Windows 8 is released), because the only remaining strategy for the non-Apple tablet market is to go where Apple will not go.

      1. Very well said. True convergence between PC and tablet is some time away. Windows 8 is a kludge that falls between two stools, addressing neither market adequately in and of itself.

        Steve Jobs’ analogy of cars and trucks rings true today as when he uttered it.

      2. Honestly, you apple fanboys are too much. People with even poorer memory will forget about the fact that Apply came out with an iPad called Newton that nobody wanted due to the reasons you dismiss in favor of attacking the premise of Windows 8. Steve Jobs sold the shit out of an mp3 player and built an empire. How is that innovative? Samsung is going to beat the pants off you queers because of Apple’s arrogance and inability to update their products meaningfully. The New iPad, really? Innovation or progress much? How about the 3GS or 4S? Siri is about as useful as you make Windows 8 to be.

    2. With Apple, there is a convergence of information manipulation in their perfectly integrated but uniquely differentiated products. Often, I carry all three–iPhone, iPad and Air — and over the course of a day can move seamlessly between them as circumstance requires — be it on the bus, in a meeting, in a lecture, researching in the library, just checking a fact at the pub. The subtle differences in the OS/iOS are perfectly suited to each device and the need it serves which is especially important. Essentially, I have the perfect ‘virtual’ computer in three elements giving singular unified control over on singularity — my information.
      Microsoft et al. just don’t get and I doubt they ever will. I don’t think they’re even part of the conversation anymore, and not worth talking about. The next dazzling innovation (excluding those that will continue to come from Apple), I believe, will come from a totally new source (mind, startup, innovator) unencumbered by Microsoft’s sloth, customer disdain and (in)ethics, Dell’s hubris, Samsung’s thievery, or Wall Street’s money-grubbing trickery.

      1. Pretty sure the majority of people will never walk around with over 3,000 dollars worth of nerd gear just to prove someone wrong at a pub. Mac users really are the people who pull out their phones in bars to check facts…

  4. keyboard text input is a vestigial part of the old DOS GUI that Apple has been working for 35 years to melt away. let’s see how far Windows 8 gets away from DOS and then judge whether it’s a platypus or a toaster fridge.

  5. Ah, MS is with the times as usual. So Windows 8 is a toaster oven. I seem to remember them being all the rage – back before the microwave existed.

    Is MS also hinting that their tablet will have a REAL heat problem (unlike the iPad’s FUD heating issue).

    1. Are you kidding me? A Toaster oven is like the iPhone of the toaster world. It’s like a smart toaster that does more than one thing. You can toast, bake or broil and most can cook using air as well. They’re more efficient, heat up faster and take up less space than a full-size oven.

      You can bake almost anything in them and you are only limited by its size… with the size of most Americans these days, maybe they could use with cooking smaller portions in their toaster ovens instead of a huge meal in their oven.

      And yes, it makes great toast.

      1. Cooks using air? Like a smart toaster? Neat! Us fat Americans never would of thought of that. We cook with heat, generated by numerous types of energy consumption, including resistive elements, burning of gaseous products and the reversing of polarity of water molecules. But air? You europeans have us fatties beat. Like you’ve never seen a trim American? Much less an obese, pasty white European with stellar dental appearance no less, who’ll use a toaster oven to prepare the frozen TV dinner they’ll consume whilst watching the telly. Susan Boyle, I’m jealous…

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