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Netgear Chairman and CEO Patrick Lo.  (Source: Toeman)
Says Apple will eventually lose out to the more open Android

Netgear Chairman and CEO Patrick Lo has never been a shy guy, as evidenced most recently by his "scathing attack" on Apple CEO Steve Jobs in an interview with The Sydney Morning Herald.

"Steve Jobs wants to suffocate the distribution so even though he doesn't own the content he could basically demand a ransom," Lo told The Herald, referring to the closed delivery model of iTunes.

This was just one specific criticism from a broad discussion of closed and proprietary products vs. open ecosystems like Google's Android. Lo said that Apple has succeeded so far because they "own the market" of many of their products, like the iPod with MP3 players. However, Lo predicted that, like Betamax vs. VHS and Mac vs. Windows, the open platform -- again referring to Android -- would win in the long run.

"Once Steve Jobs goes away, which is probably not far away, then Apple will have to make a strategic decision on whether to open up the platform," Lo told The Herald. "Ultimately a closed system just can't go that far ... If they continue to close it and let Android continue to creep up then it's pretty difficult as I see it."

Lo predicted that Android would eventually become the standard for a range of consumer electronic devices, pointing to its recent overtaking of Apple in global market share as evidence.

He also attributed Jobs' trashing of Adobe Flash as nothing more than an issue of ego.

As for Windows Phone 7, Lo said that Microsoft had fallen behind its competitors and would continue to languish there. "Microsoft is over - game over - from my point of view," he told The Herald.

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RE: He's right about the content...
By jeffbui on 1/31/2011 11:48:51 AM , Rating: 0
That's completely wrong. When have consumers ever looked for an opportunity to pay for something they get for free? The iPod took off because it was the only hard drive based portable music player at the time.

RE: He's right about the content...
By pukemon on 1/31/2011 12:32:11 PM , Rating: 3
No it wasn't. There was the Creative Nomad (remember what CmdrTaco from Slashdot said when the iPod came out?), but nobody bought those anyway...

RE: He's right about the content...
By acer905 on 1/31/2011 12:41:04 PM , Rating: 3
Sadly, you are absolutely wrong. The iPod was released in October of 2001. Before that (1998), Compaq had one with a 2.5" 4.8GB HDD sold through HanGo Electronics as the Personal Jukebox. In 2000, Creative released the first NOMAD with a 6GB 1" microdrive. Then, Apple released the iPod, with its 5GB 1.8" HDD

Apple won because of iTunes. The iPod has always been the technically inferior player.

RE: He's right about the content...
By maven81 on 1/31/2011 12:42:49 PM , Rating: 2
Lay off the coolaid. In fact people often forget that the first gen ipod wasn't even that great hardware wise. It had a firewire port rather then the much more popular usb. It had a mechanical click wheel and mechanical buttons which were not very durable. And I might add that at the time the competition had removable batteries.
The main thing it had going for it was it's small size, and dumbed down OS.

By tlbj6142 on 1/31/2011 1:47:06 PM , Rating: 2
It wasn't about pay vs free, it was pay vs stolen. Everyone knew Napster was stealing, iTunes gave honest folks a way to easily purchase music and tracks they wanted at a reasonable price without resulting to theft.

“Then they pop up and say ‘Hello, surprise! Give us your money or we will shut you down!' Screw them. Seriously, screw them. You can quote me on that.” -- Newegg Chief Legal Officer Lee Cheng referencing patent trolls
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