Steve Jobs Talks Sex Flash Stolen iPhones Adobe & Google
Steve Jobs has spoken about his sex life, Apple’s fight with Google and Adobe and that stolen iPhone. Speaking alongside Rupert Murdoch he has defended several Apple decisions at the D8 Conference in the USA
When questioned about Google, who earlier this year announced a new Android phone to compete up against the iPhone Jobs said that Apple didn’t plan to take on Google in the search space.
He stated bluntly that Apple had “no” plans to drop Google or its apps from the iPhone and that there wouldn’t be retaliation by competing directly with Google’s core search engines. The conversation recalled Jobs’ well-known townhall meeting, where the executive accused Google of competing against Apple without warning but implied he wouldn’t retaliate on a one-for-one level.
“They [at Google] decided to compete with us,” Jobs said. “We didn’t go into the search business.”
He provided more color for the situation and said that Google chief Eric Schmidt had never warned Apple in advance about what would eventually become Android. When asked if he felt betrayed, he joked that it was a personal question. “My sex life is pretty good, how’s yours?” he said.
One attendee who spoke about issues in the USA where AT&T is struggling to deliver iPhone coverage, asked Jobs about issues with making simple phone calls on an iPhone. “Somebody from Apple is talking about that. You can bet we’re doing everything we know how to do,” Jobs says. While Jobs admits network issues are not his area of expertise, he’s told things get worse before they get better. “If you believe that, things will be getting a lot better soon,” Jobs said, generating laughs from the crowd.
When asked about his vision for social gaming, Jobs says the iPhone and iPod Touch created a new class of games, a subset of casual gaming and approaching console gaming in sophistication and graphics. Jobs says he didn’t intend to compete with Sony or Nintendo — makers of the PlayStation Portable and DS respectively — but now are doing so. “We take them seriously,” says Jobs.
The session concluded after a question about navigation and set top boxes. The attendee asked Jobs whether TV will escape the up/down, left/right methods of navigating for content. Jobs says the problem with innovation in the TV industry is market strategy with a subisdised business model that gives everyone settop boxes for free or a small monthly fee. And Jobs adds nobody is willing to buy a settop box, just ask Tivo , Roku or “Google in a few months.” Jobs says only way it will change it to go back to settop box and go back to scratch.Speaking about privacy, Jobs says it’s an issue Apple takes “extremely seriously.” He cites the example of a location-based app that always asks users whether they want to use location data each time. “We do a lot of things like that to ensure people understand what these apps are doing. A lot of people in the Valley think we’re really old-fashioned about this.”
On his personal role in working with the iPad, iPhone and other Apple devices, Jobs says efforts are collaborative. “We’re the biggest startup on the planet,” Jobs says in reference to how Apple is run.
The discussion transitions to the lost iPhone prototype which ended up in the hands of tech blog Gizmodo. Jobs says the investigation is ongoing, adding there is still a debate whether the prototype was left behind in a bar or stolen.
Jobs seemed to find humor in the situation, suggesting someone make a movie of the whole ordeal because the story is so “colorful.”
As for where his life will be 10 years from now, Jobs references the iPhone prototype scandal with Gizmodo. He says when it happened, he got a lot of advice from people to let hit slide and not go after a journalist because they bought stolen property.
Jobs then followed that by saying the worst thing that could happen when we got big is if we change core values and start letting it slide. “I cant do that. I’d rather quit.” Jobs also says what keeps him going is to get a random e-mail from someone in the U.K. who tells him how th iPad is the coolest product he ever brought home.
Jobs talks about the process for reviewing iPhone and iPad apps, saying there are three main reasons Apple rejects apps: the app can’t crash, it has to do what it says, and it has to use public APIs.
Jobs adds 95% of apps submitted every week are approved within seven days. As for disupted rejections, such as one involving a political cartoonist, Jobs says the company makes mistakes and are fixing them as fast as we can.
As for the future of tablets in general, Jobs says laptops and desktop computers are going to be like trucks. They’ll still be around and still have some value.
When talking about a post-PC era, Jobs says “it’s uncomfortable to a lot of people. I think we’ve embarked on that.” Jobs didn’t say how long it will take to happen.
On the iPad, Jobs says people laugh at him because he calls the tablet magical. “But I really think that.”
On tablets and the creation of the recently-released iPad, Jobs says Apple tried to reimagine the device because handwriting on it was doomed to fail. “We said if you need a stylus you’ve already failed,” Jobs says.
Talking about the iPhone, Jobs says it’s the first phone that focused on building a new relationship with a carrier. He says he meets with iPhone carrier AT&T once a quarter, and defender their network as showing a “moderate rate of improving” after suffering data issues. “I’m convinced any other network, had you put this many iPhones on it, would have had these problems.”
When asked whether there would be advantages to having the iPhone on multiple carriers, Jobs replied, “there might be. The future is long.”
When asked about Apple’s key competitors, Microsoft and Google. On Microsoft, Jobs says he never viewed Apple as engaging in a platform war with the Washington-based firm. “Maybe that’s why we lost,” Jobs adds. As for Google and its growing Android platform: “They started competing with us and got more and more serious.”
Jobs on the reports of suicides at Chinese factory Foxconn, which makes Apple iPods and iPhones: “We’re all over this. It’s really troubling … we’re trying to understand it right now.”
Talking about Apple’s conflict with Flash creators Adobe he said “We didn’t start out to have a war with Flash. We made a technical decision. It wasn’t until we shipped iPad … that Adobe started making a stink about it. We weren’t trying to have a fight. We were deciding not to use one of their products.”
As for the video horse Jobs has latched onto, HTML5: “Video looks better and works better and you don’t need a plug-in to run it.”
Speaking with conference hosts Kara Swisher and Walt Mossberg of the Wall Street Journal, Jobs says in the early days when he first returned to Apple, the company was about 90 days from going bankrupt. “Much worse than I thought,” Jobs recalls.
Shifting gears to Adobe and Flash, Mossberg asks whether it’s fair to just be abrupt in transition and cut off consumers. Jobs responds by saying Apple doesn’t have most resources of every company in world, adding Apple must choose its horses carefully.
“If you choose wisely, you can save yourself an enormous amount of work.”
He cites the company’s shift to 3 1/2-inch floppy disk (from 5 1/4) and the early adoption of USB as examples. “We have gotten rid of things … and sometimes when we get rid of things, people call us crazy. But sometimes you have to pick things that are right horses to ride going forward.” He says Flash had its day and “is waning.”