|Microsoft Chairman took aim at the iMac and Apple for the first time and issued a challenge that shows he just doesn't get it. In an annual financial analyst meeting in Redmond, Mr. Gates took made a statement that was no doubt intended to belittle the mega-hit iMac. According to News.com which broke the story:
At Microsoft's annual gathering of financial analysts in Seattle last week, company chief Bill Gates took a swipe at Apple's multicolored iMac packaging strategy in the course of a discussion of various Intel-based devices.
"The one thing Apple's providing now is leadership in colors," Gates said as he pointed out a red-colored Intel-based personal computer on display. "It won't take long for us to catch up with that, I don't think."
The Mac Observer Spin: It is almost unnecessary to say anything about this as Mr. Gates seems to have said it all himself. However, as regular Observers know, that just is not the way we do things at The Mac Observer. :-)
Pop Quiz: Name one product developed completely in-house by the oh-so clever chaps in Washington.
Color is certainly a part of the iMac's appeal, but it is not what the iMac is all about. It is about delivering products that are easier to use, something of which Microsoft has proven completely inept at with the exception of their (surprise) Mac Business Unit which produces some very fine software. The iMac, and now the iBook, is about bringing the computer away from the world of technicians and nerds and into the world of everyday appliances. In short, the iMac and the iBook are the first step into the next paradigm of computing, a paradigm where fashion plays as much of a role as the amount of Mhz in the CPU, a paradigm where people are empowered to do what they want, where they want, with their computer, a paradigm that is about the user. It is a paradigm that does not center around IT buffoons more intent on protecting their bureaucratic jobs than advancing the productivity of employees. The iMac and the iBook are about the future and that future may well not include Microsoft in the same parasitic role that they have occupied for the last 7-10 years. Perhaps that is what frightens Mr. Gates.
Why else would such an enormously "Successful" man take such a childish swipe at a computer that has sold nearly 2 million units in the span of a year? It is our thought that he is either nervous about a changing world or he just doesn't get it.
One more counter swipe: Let's assume for a second that the iMac is only about color. It has taken a year so far for the PC world to try and "catch up" to the iMac. In that year, the entire power of an industry that dwarfs Apple has not caught up and shows no real signs of doing so unless you count the ePower (a pathetic design rip-off) or the e-one (a more legit move to the world of color). That's not a great showing for PCville.
Microsoft - Apple