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Schmidt also expresses frustration with patent wars; disdain for Windows Phone

When it comes to Eric Schmidt, former Google Inc. (GOOG) CEO and his company's arch-nemesis Apple, Inc. (AAPL), the ties that bind are almost as strong as the ties that separate.

I. Victims of Smartphone War are the Little Guys, Says Schmidt

During much of Mr. Schmidt's time atop the Google throne; he also served on Apple's board of directors.  The two companies had a fruitful relationship and Mr. Schmidt was close friends with late Apple CEO Steven P. Jobs.  That relationship fast deteriorated when Google decided to launch Android, a Linux based smartphone platform that would eventually come to heavily outsell Apple in the smartphone market in unit sales.  Mr. Jobs expressed a feeling of "betrayal" at the decision, which not only spoke to his zealous feelings of ownership of the smartphone market, but also his strange relationship with Google and Mr. Schmidt.

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal Mr. Schmidt speaks optimistically that the pair can work out their differences with respect to patent litigation, commenting:

[Google's relationship with Apple has] always been on and off.  Obviously, we would have preferred them to use our maps. They threw YouTube off the home screen [of iPhones and iPads]. I'm not quite sure why they did that.

[But] the adult way to run a business is to run it more like a country. They have disputes, yet they've actually been able to have huge trade with each other. They're not sending bombs at each other.

I think both Tim [Cook, Apple's CEO] and Larry [Page, Google's CEO], the sort of successors to Steve [Jobs] and me if you will, have an understanding of this state model. When they and their teams meet, they have just a long list of things to talk about.

Eric Schmidt
Former Google CEO Eric Schmidt is not concerned Android will be hurt by the patent wars.
[Image Source: The Sydney Morning Herald]

Mr. Schmidt says that both Apple and Google are "doing fine" and that neither side has been able to gain ground in the patent war, much like the entrenched empires of the First World War.  He says that the real "loser" in the patent wars are small startups, which might look to create an innovative news smartphone operating system as Android VP Andy Rubin did when his startup made what would later become Android back in the middle of the last decade.  With all the lawsuits and junk patents, Mr. Schmidt argues such "garage" innovation is simply impossible in today's legal climate.

II. Former CEO Addresses Criticism, Says Microsoft is no Threat

The Google executive admits that his company long lagged Apple in terms of financially compensating developers.  He remarks, "Google Play [Google's app store] and the monetization just started working well in the last year, maybe the last six months. The volume is indisputable, and with the volume comes the opportunity and the luxury of time."

As for the perennial question of whether Google will or should favor new acquisition Motorola Mobility over its third-party Android partners, Mr. Schmidt says that would be a "terrible mistake".  He says that when the deal was announced he personally flew to meet with executives at South Korea's Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd. (KSC:005930) -- the world's largest smartphone maker and foremost Android adopter -- to assure them that there would be no favoritism.

As for Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFTWindows Phone; Mr. Schmidt was dismissive of the operating system.  He blasts, "I have not used it, but I think that Microsoft has not emerged as a trendsetter in this new model yet."

Eric Schmidt argues Microsoft's Windows Phone is no "trend setter".

Mr. Schmidt expressed hopes that current antitrust investigations into Google's involvement in various markets would wrap up.  He says he has no interest working for the Obama administration in a government post, saying Google has always been his "home".

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RE: Windows Fone
By Breakfast Susej on 12/5/2012 1:07:45 PM , Rating: -1
My problem with the way Microsoft is handling Windows phone, and even the RT tablet is reminiscent of how they handled the failed Zune.

They simply don't seem like they want to compete. I'm Canadian, and the Zune offerings were always lesser and poorer in Canada, so to are the Surface RT offerings, and the Windows Phone offerings.

Google has not always been the sterling example here either. To their credit however they are getting better. I just ordered a Nexus 4 from the play store, something that in the past was an impossibility in Canada, you took what the robellus triopoly gave you and dealt with it.

The surface, and Windows phone 8 are an example of Microsoft's continued failure to effectively advertise as well as develop a product people will get excited about. Five years ago I would have laughed uproariously at anyone who said that Microsoft could ever falter as the dominant force in the OS market, but today I can envision that kind of outcome.

I have always said the Motorola Atrix was a phone ahead of it's time. I think a day is coming when you will walk into your office, sit down at your keyboard and your phone will wirelessly sync to your keyboard and monitors and act as your desktop without you even needing to take it out of your pocket. Likely it will charge wirelessly while it's doing the same thing.

RE: Windows Fone
By Argon18 on 12/5/12, Rating: -1
RE: Windows Fone
By nikon133 on 12/5/2012 4:20:50 PM , Rating: 1
Of course, simple fact that Windows 8 is selling better than Windows 7 in the same timeframe since their respective releases doesn't mean anything.

Much as I recall, dorky guy was always much more popular that uptight fake-cool arrogant Mac prick. But you do sound like you would rather look after that guy.

At the end, I think your parents should limit your computer time; you obviously have too much of it, for your age, and you are not using it good at all.

RE: Windows Fone
By Stephen! on 12/5/2012 5:38:16 PM , Rating: 2
Windows Fone, Kin, Zone, Surface RT, Windows Eight, it's one failure after another out of Redmond

True to some extent, with Kin and Zune, although it still remains to be seen how Windows Phone, Surface and Windows Eight will fare.

RE: Windows Fone
By Ramstark on 12/5/2012 8:13:26 PM , Rating: 1
Oh! Look at you! Following every Microsoft Post on DT to troll it...
You know what? No one cares or reads your posts anymore...
Goodbye, have a nice day!

RE: Windows Fone
By elleehswon on 12/5/2012 8:16:42 PM , Rating: 3
remember when Microsoft responded to the commercials with 95% of the PC market share?

RE: Windows Fone
By jnemesh on 12/6/2012 11:45:55 AM , Rating: 1
Agreed, Microsoft is apparently making every effort to drive users away from their dominant platform! Windows Phone is an embarrassment...I have no idea how they got this thing even released! And to have their #1 partner, Nokia, claim the Lumia 900 is "the first phone out of beta testing", only to have it become INSTANTLY obsolete has to hurt too!

I remember a conversation I had with a Microsoft employee recently at a bus stop. I asked her if she used Windows Phone. She said, no, she uses an iPhone, and will be issued a Windows Phone 8 device, but she will only use it as a 2nd device. If even MS employees being FORCED to use WP8 refuse to use it as a primary device, what hope do they think they have of convincing others to use it?

Microsoft is doomed if they keep pushing "it's not Metro" on everyone. I, for one, refuse to buy ANY Microsoft product from here on out!

RE: Windows Fone
By InsGadget on 12/7/2012 4:29:02 PM , Rating: 2
I, for one, refuse to buy ANY Microsoft product from here on out!


“We do believe we have a moral responsibility to keep porn off the iPhone.” -- Steve Jobs

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