All Things Digital Conference – Old School Love In With Old School Signs of Fight – Microsoft and Apple. The All Things Digital Conference is going on in SoCal near San Diego. I was planning on heading down but had end of school year kid plans and a trip to Portland for the Lessons In Social Advertising (L.I.S.A.) event. I wish that I could have gone. Kara Swisher is putting on a great event. Maybe next year.
The big early storyline from my sources and reading the transcript is that Ballmer has ‘Steve Jobs’ envy. Ballmer is visibly raging inside that his legacy might be one of a laggard not an innovator. While Jobs is the superhero who got his company back from the VCs and took it to the top of the industry. Jobs is the poster child of innovation and superior product design. Ballmer? Who knows.
Remember these are the two guys that swindled Jobs decades ago and now Jobs is moving like a true innovator. While Ballmer throws out his installed PC numbers in comparision to Jobs numbers, it reminds me of the school yard fight between the old rivals. Except now they aren’t in elementary school (80s) they are in college (all grown up).
Microsoft has new rivals (Google, Facebook), but the Gates/Ballmer and Jobs battle is personal. This isn’t strictly business. It’s personal.
Guys like us avoid monopolies (yeah right)..
From All Thing D Blog: I’ve received quite a few messages about Microsoft (MSFT) Chairman Bill Gates’s “monopolies” comment, which we’ve been running in the quote box on our D6 Highlights page. For the curious, here’s a quick recap of the exchange that led up to it.
[Microsoft CEO Steve] Ballmer: To accelerate scale it made sense for us to consider a Yahoo acquisition. The truth of the matter is, if nobody else gets scale except the current leader, what happens? … Some day all the ads for The Wall Street Journal Online might be sold by one guy and he’ll tell you exactly how much your editorial is worth.
Kara: Yeah, like a monopoly. Interesting.
Walt: That’s a great point. That’s exactly the sort of argument that was made against Microsoft.
Ballmer: Am I saying there’s something wrong? I’m just saying we are guys who will compete. That’s all I’m saying.
Gates: Guys like us avoid monopolies. We like to compete.