Apple vs. MS in the 80s / Apple vs. android now.

maflynn

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Using generalized terms there is a striking similarity of the struggle between apple and microsoft back in the day and now google and apple.

Back then, Apple heralded the personal computer era showing how "easy" and cool it was. They provided a great OS and was on the cutting edge and that was tied to apple hardware which was equally great and cutting edge.

MS came around, copied much of the OS and licensed it to everyone/anyone who was willing to make a clone.

The end result is that MS based operating systems have a market share in the 80 to 90 percentile.

Fast forward to 2010
Apple introduced a ground breaking phone and OS. Again being the main driving force in a new category - they've developed a great, cool product but like before - very closed and proprietary. While that have a huge repository of apps available, they have a wacky (undocumented and inconsistent) approval process. I believe the latest app count is around 150,000

Google comes and basically copies the Ms approach. While android is less polished and to a point seemingly less stable. Their marketshare is increasing. They have a much easier and quicker application submission process. Currently they have around 30,000 apps

Will history repeat itself?
In both cases apple had an OS that was cutting edge and cool but closed (to only their hardware). Competitors used an open approach with frequent updates. Apple doesn't seem to update the hardware/software as often (annual iPhone/OS updates) which I believe further hinders them.

While talk of market fragmentation is a popular topic with android, one cannot deny that they're scooping up marketshare very quickly and I don't see how apple can continue to compete with such a business tactic. They couldn't back in 80s/90s and its quite possible they could be in a struggle now.

Thoughts/opinions?
 

pdjudd

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Jun 19, 2007
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Thoughts/opinions?
Your analysis ignores the role that IBM played in getting MS to where they were. MS got to where it was by attaching themselves to the IBM business mentality and using that success to cement their OS as a success. Sure they copied the Mac OS, but it took them years to do that.

You are also ignoring the fact that MS and Apple were focusing on different markets - Apple focusses on hardware and software where MS focused on the software market. Also remember that Apple never had a huge computer market share and they failed at something that MS succeeded at - Parlaying one success into another. It has nothing to do with open versus closed. MS’s success has lots to do with leveraging successes and their monopolistic practices. The cloning was a mere coincidence and was only exploited by an idiotically weak agreement between IBM and MS.

I also think your analysis of Androids growth is not very accurate either. I argue that Androids success has little to do with being open - it’s just better than everyone else other than Apple’s. MS is a failure in the mobile environment, Palm virtually ignored Apps, RIM has never had a strong third party development program in the first place.

Your talk about the numbers may sound compelling, but in the end numbers don’t mean much. Where is the big developers like EA on Android? Why is there so much OS fragmentation and application compatibility issues?

I think you are trying to compare two distinctly different scenarios and platforms and implying that the same things can happen. I recommend reading this article by John Gruber to get a better insight as to the differences in what happened. His point is obvious. Just because one market turned out a particular way doesn’t mean that it should have ended that way.
 

maflynn

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To be sure there were a number of other mitigating factors which is why I opened up my hypothesis with "generalized terms"

None the less we have apple being the predominant player in a burgenoning market that they helped extend and develop fighting against google who's tactics are similar to MS (licensing OS to hardware developers).
 

pdjudd

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To be sure there were a number of other mitigating factors which is why I opened up my hypothesis with "generalized terms"
Sure, if you compare any two things under “general terms” you can find several similarities. I am simply saying that you are missing the bigger picture - Similarities are nice, but you can’t just ignore the differences and ignore the context - otherwise the discussion has no purpose.

Your premise is interesting, but it ignores several factual elements to it. Those factual elements cannot be glossed over.
 

jimmyjoemccrow

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Jul 15, 2009
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MS didn't copy Apple's UI, they copied the same people Apple copied, Xerox. Apple were simply first to get a machine out with a GUI.
 

Nash Bridges

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Apr 2, 2010
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To be sure there were a number of other mitigating factors which is why I opened up my hypothesis with "generalized terms"

None the less we have apple being the predominant player in a burgeoning market that they helped extend and develop fighting against google who's tactics are similar to MS (licensing OS to hardware developers).
Actually Research In Motion is the predominant player in the smart phone market. They were there first and have the hardware and software locked in such as Apple did in the 80's. Apple has gained a greater share of their market than Google.

What you are not taking into account is that the iTunes platform is the predominate music distribution platform in the market place. Android doesn't have a chance of taking a bite out of that. And since the iPhone also doubles as an iPod it is more appealing to customers looking for 1 solution instead of two.

Once Apple drops its exclusivity with AT&T market share will significantly rise.
 

Silvereel

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Jan 19, 2010
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MS didn't copy Apple's UI, they copied the same people Apple copied, Xerox. Apple were simply first to get a machine out with a GUI.
I think it's probably more accurate to say that Apple copied Xerox, and Microsoft copied Apple. Bill Gates even seems to have admitted this. He said in an interview around the early '90s/late '80s: "Just because Steve broke into Xerox and took the TV first doesn't mean I can't go in and take the stereo."
 

pdjudd

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I think it's probably more accurate to say that Apple copied Xerox, and Microsoft copied Apple. Bill Gates even seems to have admitted this. He said in an interview around the early '90s/late '80s: "Just because Steve broke into Xerox and took the TV first doesn't mean I can't go in and take the stereo."
And that is inaccurate. Jobs did not steal anything. Yes, the Macintosh was inspired by work that Xerox did, but Jobs was given access to Xerox’s tech in a stock exchange with Xerox. Apple cannot steal what it was legally given access to.

According to Wiki:
After hearing of the pioneering GUI technology being developed at Xerox PARC, Jobs had negotiated a visit to see the Xerox Alto computer and Smalltalk development tools in exchange for Apple stock options. The Lisa and Macintosh user interfaces were partially influenced by technology seen at Xerox PARC and were combined with the Macintosh group's own ideas.
Wiki mentions this website says that Xerox played a much smaller role - and that the Lisa team supplied a lot of their own ideas.
 

Thomas Harte

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Nov 30, 2005
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And that is inaccurate. Jobs did not steal anything. Yes, the Macintosh was inspired by work that Xerox did, but Jobs was given access to Xerox’s tech in a stock exchange with Xerox. Apple cannot steal what it was legally given access to.
Technically they wouldn't have stolen it in either event, since for something to be stolen requires that the person taking it intended to permanently deprive the owner of possession (as contrasted with, e.g., borrowing). From an IP point of view you're right though; Apple acquired the intellectual property as an asset then exploited and extended it. Microsoft licensed the stuff from Apple, then relied on a poorly drafted contract to retain permanent rights. And eventually the courts decided that IP doesn't work like that anyway.
 

pdjudd

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Microsoft licensed the stuff from Apple, then relied on a poorly drafted contract to retain permanent rights. And eventually the courts decided that IP doesn't work like that anyway.
Apple’s suit against Microsoft was over copyright though, not IP rights. We can go back and forth over the judges ruling and weather or not the judge was right or not, but that’s neither here nor there. One thing we can agree with - Apple did a terrible job with their MS contract. However that was done under different leadership and after Jobs was ousted.

ETA: Your main comment though is right. Bill Gates’s statement was very defensive in nature and was an attempt to justify his rip-off actions which was never what Apple’s intentions were when MS was working with Apple. He was trying to say “If I’m a thief than so are you!” Not real accurate though.
 

ArrowSmith

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Dec 15, 2009
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"Poorly crafted contracts" seem to have been the norm in dealings with Microsoft. Ask IBM.
Yes if only for better crafted contracts back in the 1980s, MSFT wouldn't be in existence today and Apple would have 90% market share. :rolleyes:
 

pdjudd

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Jun 19, 2007
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Plymouth, MN
Yes if only for better crafted contracts back in the 1980s, MSFT wouldn't be in existence today and Apple would have 90% market share. :rolleyes:
Nobody is making that argument though. MS got it’s markeshare when cloning took off. MS was given a huge advantage due to IBM - they never had the problem of engineering computers like Apple had. Is IBM had been more careful, they would still be in the consumer market selling computers and there would be no need for the MS anti-trust trial since there would be no OEM market.

Of course if Apple was more careful, Windows may never have been made. MS would still be around and may be a decent software company, but they would not be where they were. Most of their money would be in partnership with IBM and selling software.
 

MisterMe

macrumors G4
Jul 17, 2002
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Yes if only for better crafted contracts back in the 1980s, MSFT wouldn't be in existence today and Apple would have 90% market share. :rolleyes:
If you knew any of the history of microcomputers, then you would know just how nonsensical that statement is. The point that I was making is that Microsoft has a history of screwing its partners. "Poorly crafted contracts" is the excuse that Microsoft apologists give when the Redmond Monopoly gets caught. Somehow we are expected to believe that Microsoft gets first dibs on the best legal advice.
 

DakotaGuy

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Jan 14, 2002
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Once Apple drops its exclusivity with AT&T market share will significantly rise.
I just don't see that happening anytime soon though. I think Apple will stay with AT&T only until Android passes them in US market share. By the time they finally move to other major carriers Android will have one heck of a business going.
 

lsvtecjohn3

macrumors 6502a
May 8, 2008
856
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Apple introduced a ground breaking phone and OS. Again being the main driving force in a new category - they've developed a great, cool product but like before - very closed and proprietary. While that have a huge repository of apps available, they have a wacky (undocumented and inconsistent) approval process. I believe the latest app count is around 150,000

Their marketshare is increasing. They have a much easier and quicker application submission process. Currently they have around 30,000 apps


While talk of market fragmentation is a popular topic with android, one cannot deny that they're scooping up marketshare very quickly and I don't see how apple can continue to compete with such a business tactic.
First off iPhone OS has 185,000 plus apps that run on the iPhone, iPad and the iPod touch. Android only has around 34,000. Apple has sold over 50 million iPhones, 35 million iPod touches and their about to sale 1 million iPads (first month) where there's only been 10 million Android phones sold.

There's more people developing for the iPhone OS not only because it's more people you can reach but also it's easier to do.

How is Google going to catch up to Apple in market share? Whats going to happen when the iPhone goes on all the major carriers not only in the US but around the world?
 

clevin

macrumors G3
Aug 6, 2006
9,095
1
copy, copy, copy, stop being delusional and claim everybody copied apple. read the documents, read what judges have to say.

stop pretending you are smarter than a panel of judges, who carefully thought through the case for lengthy period, listened to the arguments from experts of both sides and came to a conclusion.

Jesus, the arrogance is beyond imagination. If you like to re-write the history THAT much, why don't you write a 100 page paper on it, and get it published on a peer reviewed journal?

Google said there is 60,000 android handset sold EVERYDAY. now do the math yourself and see if it will surpass your Jesus Phone sooner or later.
 

lsvtecjohn3

macrumors 6502a
May 8, 2008
856
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Google said there is 60,000 android handset sold EVERYDAY. now do the math yourself and see if it will surpass your Jesus Phone sooner or later.
Maybe you should do the math 60,000 x 365 = 21,900,000. There's has only been at best 10 million Android phones sold since being released in October 2008. As of February 8 2010 there's been 8,450,420 Android phones sold. So how is Android going to pass the iPhone in market share?