Palm CEO/Former iPod Head: “I’ve Never Used an iPhone”

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Palm CEO Jon Rubinstein has never used an iPhone, and his company doesn't pay that much attention to Apple. Long term Apple Observers may remember that Mr. Rubinstein is a former executive vice president of Apple where he brought the iPod to market and was the first head of the division that was subsequently created around the device.

He made the comment in an interview with Kara Swisher of AllThingsD during last week's CES trade show in Las Vegas, which was posted Friday at the media outlet's site.

When asked how he views Apple as a competitor in the smartphone market, Mr. Rubinstein said, "We don't pay that much attention to Apple….I know it sounds really strange."

It must have sounded strange to Ms. Swisher, because she flat out said that she didn't believe him. He insisted, however, adding, "I don't have an iPhone. Actually, I've never used one."

He also said that he felt Apple was making a mistake in blocking the Palm Pré from syncing with iTunes, saying, "We don't think what Apple did is good for their customers, but Apple's going to do what Apple's going to do."

To address the syncing issue for Palm users in the future, he said that he hopes the independent Palm developer community develops their own syncing apps.


Bryan Chaffin

Mr. Rubinstein is either obfuscating when he says he’s never used an iPhone, or his hubris dwarfs even mine. While it’s one thing to obsess over the competition, or to try and copy the competition, it’s another thing to not check out the competition from time to time.


Somehow, somewhere, there will be a video of him using one that pops up on the web. It’s bound to exist!


Gotta love his thought process.  Well since we can’t ride on AAPL’s coat tales with syncing we will just hope the 3rd party developers will do our job for us.  They never got around to fixing the iSync issues with their devices post 10.5.  The companies whole buy our stuff but don’t expect us to actually do anything for you after that philosophy is pathetic when the entire point of having the devices is being able to synchronize them.  It shouldn’t be expected to buy a companies product hen have to buy or install a 3rd party piece of software just to get the thing to talk and synchronize data.  I’d rant more but I think that would be beating the dead horse that is Palm.


Mr. Rubenstein needs to buy a copy of Sun Tzu’s “Art of War” and actually read it. 

So it is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you can win a hundred battles without a single loss.
If you only know yourself, but not your opponent, you may win or may lose.
If you know neither yourself nor your enemy, you will always endanger yourself.

The Sentinel

Oh my. This is why Palm is in it’s death-throws. Hasn’t even used a iPhone? So has no idea what the competition is offering customers. Latest Palm hardware is impressive. But with no software to sync, it’s almost useless as an organizer.

Your Palm V was a very productive piece of IT. Goodbye Palm. It’s all over now.


“When I say ‘never used’, what I really mean is…”

Palm CEO Jon Rubinstein as he feeblishly attempts to explain his lack of market awareness to stockholders at the next quarterly report meeting.

The Sentinel

Alan A. wrote:

?When I say ?never used?, what I really mean is??

Palm CEO Jon Rubinstein as he feeblishly attempts to explain his lack of market awareness to stockholders at the next quarterly report meeting.

Thought Alan hit the nail on the head. Though I predict that there won’t be many more stockholder meetings for Palm. It’s very sad they’ve lost their way.


I would bet that Apple employees have bought the Droid, Nexus One, etc., to test. They would buy them privately, of course, rather like Consumer Reports does. Not being intimately aware of what your competitors are selling sounds like insanity to me.

Like Sun Tzu, George Patton believed in knowing his enemy. It may be apocryphal, but remember the line in “Patton” after his first victory in Africa: “I read your book!” referring to Rommel’s book on tank warfare doctrine.


A CEO who intentionally doesn’t want to learn about the competition?

He should have just pasted a big “I’m an Idiot” sign on his forehead.  He would have at least gotten a few laughs and a little sympathy.

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