Apple’s quarterly earnings call held yesterday revealed a crucial difference between the two CEOs Apple Inc. has employed in the last decade. One has been a ruthless adversary to the likes of Google and Samsung; the other prefers discussions over fist fights.
Tim Cook, who took the reigns from Steve Jobs after his passing away in the fall of 2011, would rather settle differences outside court, whereas Steve Jobs is known to have declared war to a competitor in one IP litigation.
When Google announced their Android operating system, the late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs became furious with the Mountain View company over some elements that seemed to have been copied from Apple’s own iOS.
Jobs later promised to wage a thermonuclear war on the search giant after failed discussions with Eric Schmidt over the resembling elements between the two mobile platforms.
At one point during yesterday’s discussions centered around Apple’s earnings, one topic brought up by an analyst was Apple’s patent disputes with Samsung and several Android-based phone manufacturers.
Cook said “I’ve always hated litigation”, admitting that he’d rather “settle than battle.”
This is a crucial difference between the current chief executive officer and Steve Jobs, the former Apple boss whose DNA is embedded in every single atom that makes the company, from the food served on the campus at 1 Infinite Loop
, to the upcoming version of the iPhone
It was Steve Jobs’ relentlessness that got things done when others refused to play ball. A more toned-down CEO may now be regarded as a soft spot of Apple Inc., which might encourage competitors to push forward with their plagiarism.
Still, Cook made it clear that he would never let Apple “become the developer for the world,” stressing that he just wants others to “people to invent their own stuff.” This has been Apple’s stance on patent infringement since the time Steve Jobs was still at the helm.