WSJ.com interviews Tim Cook and asked him about the smartphone market.
WSJ: Will the smartphone market follow the PC market, where Apple is a niche player?
Cook: I don’t view it that way. There are several reasons. If you look back at the Mac/Windows battle that was going on at the time, you’d find that one of the things that was the catalyst for separating Mac from Windows share was applications. There was a vast, vast difference in the number of applications that was available for the Macintosh than what was available on Windows. Over time, that gap grew and grew and grew. And in fact, the Mac began to lose some key applications. We have over a million apps on iOS. We have over half-million that have been optimized for iPad. That half-million compares to 1,000 for Android tablets. That’s one of the reasons, although not the only reason, why the experience on Android tablets is so crappy because the app is nothing more than a stretched out smartphone app.
It is the attention to details that make the iPad stand out.
Cook: The other thing is that Windows pretty much was one thing. Android is like Europe. Europe was a name that somebody came up with for Americans who didn’t understand that Europe was a lot of countries that weren’t like U.S. states. They were very different. Android is many things. How many people who use a Kindle know that they’re using Android? And you see what Samsung is doing by putting more and more software on top. I think it’s night and day. The compare is so off.
So, no, I don’t see it as same. And I’m not saying this just because I am at Apple because I do understand the PC world at that time because I was in it. It was totally different. If you really talk to the people who went through it and understood it at a deep level, I don’t think any of them would tell you it’s the same.