Oct 11 - Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt says Google and Apple are locked in a ''defining'' battle as two of the dominant players in the technology industry. Conway G. Gittens reports.
There are four tech titans, according to Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt: Google, Apple, Amazon and Facebook, but the biggest battle of the information age right now is between Apple and Google. SOUNDBITE: ERIC SCHMIDT, EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN, GOOGLE (ENGLISH) SAYING: "The Android-Apple platform fight is the defining fight in the industry today and I didn't say that two years ago. And here is the argument, Apple has put God knows how many people and engineers in making this very good platform even better. The number of apps they have, so forth and so on, all the content, everybody here knows if you are an iPhone user, all of the content they have, the partnerships they have, what's the scale of that? It's an enormously large platform for developers, knowledge, cloud services, so forth; the Google platform Android is even larger. Surveys that we've seen on unit volume indicate that there are four times as many Android phones as there are iPhones." Schmidt can thank Samsung in part for Android's success. In the third quarter alone, Samsung sold 55 million smartphones, which is double iPhone sales in the same period. Google won't put that relationship with hardware companies like Samsung in jeopardy as he tries to revitalize the Motorola brand Google purchased earlier this year. SOUNDBITE: ERIC SCHMIDT, EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN, GOOGLE (ENGLISH) SAYING: "The architecture of Android requires an ecosystem of partners that invest lots of money and makes lots of money on their hardware platforms, we won't do anything to screw that up by virtue of Motorola." But one company Schmidt doesn't seem worried about - Microsoft. SOUNDBITE: ERIC SCHMIDT, EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN, GOOGLE (ENGLISH) SAYING: "Everyone I know has moved to the Mac in that space, so we'll see how that plays out, they are now behind. They are a well-funded, smart, well-run company that have not been able to bring up state of the art products in the spaces we have talked about as of yet." Schmidt made the comments during the discussion at the 92nd Street Y in New York City. Conway Gittens, Reuters