In a recent interview with Bloomberg Businessweek, Google’s CEO Larry Page opens up about the company’s competition and Apple in particular, claiming that “the Android differences were actually for show.” He claims that the firestorm over Android “served their interests” and that “for a lot of companies, it’s useful for them to feel like they have an obvious competitor and to rally around that.”
He also deflects the notion that he was in a personal battle with Jobs, noting that “I had a relationship with Steve,” and that Jobs actually requested the meeting with Page before his death. Page says that “we had a very nice talk… we always did when we had a discussion generally,” and that “I took it as an honor that he wanted to spend some time with me.” But the Google CEO doesn’t pull punches elsewhere.
Page observed that “the general trend of the industry toward being a lot more litigious… has been a sad thing,” laments the unproductive competitiveness in the technology industry. He jabs at the competition, saying that “I think companies usually get into that when they’re toward the end of their life cycle or they don’t have confidence in their abilities to compete naturally.”
Page cites Facebook as an example of “the tendency of the internet to move into a well-guarded state.” He says that “our friends at Facebook have imported many, many, many Gmail addresses and exported zero addresses” — “and they claim that users don’t own that data, which is a totally specious claim.”