iPhone

Five more snarky remarks Steve Jobs could have made, if asked

Steve Jobs issued a verbal smackdown of Apple competitors on Monday. Since he was being so candid, here are five questions I would have liked to asked Steve, and a stab at how he might have answered.

Steve Jobs was on a roll when he made a surprise appearance on Apple's quarterly earnings call on October 18 and unleashed a verbal smackdown on Android, BlackBerry, 7-inch tablets, and Google's claims of "openness."

After his prepared remarks, Jobs also stuck around for the Q&A and dropped a few more zingers. Since Steve was on such a roll and was being so candid, it's too bad that there weren't journalists around to ask him some pointed questions on a few juicy topics.

Here are the five questions I would have liked to have asked him. And, based on Steve's forthcoming mood during the call as well as some of his past remarks, here are my (slightly tongue-in-cheek) predictions for how he would have answered them.

Question 1: Will Android do to iPhone what Windows did to Mac?

What Steve could have said:

"You're totally thinking about this the wrong way. The smartphone market is not the PC market, and people don't buy things for the same reasons they did two decades ago. That's why they're buying so many more of our products.

"People just want their technology to work. They don't care about CPU speeds, or operating systems, or 'openness.' They just want to do really cool things, like Facetime. People buy Android phones for one of two reasons: 1.) They can't get a good AT&T connection in their area, or 2.) They have no taste."

Question 2: Will Windows Phone 7 steal iPhone market share?

What Steve could have said:

"First, we would like to welcome Microsoft back to the mobile market. We were starting to wonder if they were going to come back at all. Second, Microsoft is not innovating with Windows Phone 7. They're simply imitating iPhone. This is what they do best. Unfortunately for them, this time the developers are on our side. And even Microsoft doesn't have enough money to throw at all of the developers to get them to build apps for an inferior platform."

Question 3: Are you worried the iPhone 4 cracked-screen issue could turn into another Antennagate?

What Steve could have said:

"The so-called 'antennagate' was a creation of the media. People love the iPhone 4. It's the best phone we've ever made. As we've demonstrated, it doesn't have any more antenna issues than any of the other leading smartphones. As for this cracked screen issue, if you drop your phone on the concrete, it's going to break -- no matter what kind of phone you have. People need to be more careful with their phones."

Question 4: What do you say to people who claim the iPad isn't good for creating content?

What Steve could have said:

"We've been in the computer business for a long time and we've learned that 80% of people just aren't very interesting. They don't need to create that much content, because when they do, most it isn't very good. The iPad actually saves them from themselves because it keeps them from creating a bunch of useless stuff that no one else wants to read."

Question 5: The enterprise has long ignored Apple, why will the iPad be any different?

What Steve could have said:

"As I've mentioned before, I've always hated the way the buying process works in the enterprise because the people who buy the products aren't the ones who actually use the products. That's changing. Now, workers are putting pressure on their IT departments and telling them which products to purchase. Some people are even buying their own computers and smartphones when they don't like the ones they get from the company. And, according to our internal research, when they have a choice, 95.8% of the business workers who actually have any taste choose our products over the competition."

Disclaimer: We realize that the Internet does not have a sense of humor and some of you will take this literally even though it is an obvious attempt at humor and we've clearly marked it as such. We fully expect some of you to claim that you were misled by this article into thinking that these were Steve's actual words. Of course, if you're reading this disclaimer then you're probably not one of them.

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About

Jason Hiner is the Global Editor in Chief of TechRepublic and Global Long Form Editor of ZDNet. He is an award-winning journalist who writes about the people, products, and ideas that are revolutionizing the ways we live and work in the 21st century.

114 comments
AbsurdlyComplicated
AbsurdlyComplicated

Thanks Jason, Q & A #4 made me laugh out loud. More, it's a reason for *you* *not* to have an ipad. Keep creating content.

McClausky
McClausky

I really liked number 4! They are facts that Steve must have already realized, but will never admit.

billy
billy

At least when Steve Jobs reads this he will have a sense of humor about it becauase really, he stands behind the iPhone. Droid X user :)

Gis Bun
Gis Bun

God [a.k.a. Steve Jobs] wants to make sure his church [a.k.a.] doesn't get plundered by other religions [a.k.a. Android, RIM, etc.]. So he will say anything to defend his religion. Can't wait for the sex abuse scandals to begin. :-)

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I have looked high and low and I don't see where Steve Jobs said any of that. It appears to me that you are basing your editorial on false information, one minute you offer accurate, informative comments and though invoking posts, then you follow with such tripe?! How is anyone supposed to know what you are putting facts forth or are just making things up? :D just kidding of course, Jason. Someone had to take you up on your disclaimer. So here's what I'd have asked if I had was around that day. "Mr. Jobs, does it pain you that your former buddy and now competitor, if you actually deem yourself "competition", makes trillions more than you do and has been able penetrate a massive market share in comparison to your.....I've got this, just a minute...'APPLE' devices?" (of course I'd be sure to make the little quote gesture too) "My Jobs, as I am sure you will know, if not openly admit; the i-Pod is a complete joke when it comes to audio reproduction quality and you force your customers to pay good money for these low quality knockoffs of professionally recorded material. Seeing as you managed to also sell that same crowd i-Phones, along with more free apps at a premium price and again, even more low quality audio. Can you not post your exact sales figures for 2011 just based on the number of full fledged dupes you already have, or do you feel you can suck even more people yet into your low end, proprietary trap with i-Pad too? Mr. Jobs, did you know that the newspaper is less than one dollar? Given that your digital newspaper reader/i-Pad sells for the price of several hundred newspapers, will you be offering free trial subscriptions for new users too? If so, when will people be able to pick them up at the local Best Buy? Lastly, Mr, Jobs, and I appreciate your patience this morning, have you ever worked a single honest day in your life? It appears that you like to portray yourself as 'one of the guys', able to do a little paintball on the weekend with your employees. The people that have been sucked into buying your second rate junk seem to feel that you are like them, you come from an IT background and work hard to bring superior products to market at affordable prices. When are you going to break out laughing and let them know it was all just a game all along and that you couldn't care less if the devices were worthy of their hard earned money or not?

csandrews68
csandrews68

Had to say this - Loved the disclaimer! Down with the skimmers!

pjcasey75
pjcasey75

Mr. Hiner. Don't you realize you can't make a living doing fake news? Signed, Jon Stewart.

jrowe
jrowe

Thank you for the laugh :)

paul.desjardins
paul.desjardins

Jason, This is just plain funny. I liked it, especially the disclaimer at the bottom. That was my favorite part! Also, I have to say that I think some of your comments were fairly spot on as to how Steve would have answered the questions, even thought it was tongue-in-cheek. Good job. Fun read.

Andrew.Istead
Andrew.Istead

Well that would be my question as that is the model used on the app store

wernerbalou
wernerbalou

Jason, simply wonderful! Congratulations! Werner

specialfx63
specialfx63

Everyone's looking at me hiding behind my monitor crackin' up ! Oh, jeez, I don't know what's funnier, the article or all the comments. Thanks for making my Monday morning guys !!

scott
scott

Steve Job's one line responses in emails and his snarky remarks/knows better than everyone else just bothers me and I can't stand the Apple arrogance.. it makes me not want to buy their products. Although I do own an iPhone and an iPod.. But because there was nothing better or comparable when I needed the functionality/ease of use. So I do believe in using the right tool for the job at the right time.

rocmon
rocmon

I would ask, hey Steve - were you abused as a child? you seem very bitter and attention starved! Good luck getting out of that distortion field!

yobtaf
yobtaf

Really? You know exactly what you're doing. Making a pathetic attempt at attracting hits from a certain group by inflaming another. The Topic is "Windows Desktop". What does Steve Jobs have to do with that? Do you ever look yourself in the mirror and ask: Is this what I went into writing for? You sold out man. For chump change.

jonniebgood
jonniebgood

Re #4. Let's see now. One of the great things about the iPhone- or so you say- is that it has over 300,000 apps available when the competition can so far at best offer around 75,000, or whatever. Wow. 300,000 apps- 99% of which are as useless as a screen door on a submarine to 99% of the users. Useless stuff, as you put it, created by people you're trying to save themselves from- unless there's a chance at a buck or two. All contributions to Apple gratefully accepted. Not that there's much different with the competition, of course, but this insane notion that life isn't complete unless I can check out the newest coolest app on my 3.5" screen completely escapes me. At a buck ninety nine for tons of them, as I said earlier, Mr. Job's pockets thank you all for his percentage. Don't get me wrong- I'm not trying to slag anyone's hardware or software. Everybody likes different ways of doing things for different reasons. It's the whole attitude of the whole thing that makes me sit back and wonder about the intelligence of our species.

Cougar Abogado
Cougar Abogado

Wow. Quite a roast. It would be a stretch to say I know Steve Jobs incredibly well, and yet, while reading, I had a hard time remembering that this was made up. Four stars.

yobtaf
yobtaf

Try a little harder.

jeredt
jeredt

Now I know someone who will never be invited to an Apple press event.

tracyamescooper
tracyamescooper

My boss has an iPad and most everyone in my office has an iPhone and loves them. I've tried both and just don't like them. I won't give up my laptop or my phone with real qwerty keyboards. So not everyone is in love with the iWhatever.

john
john

Funny but too verbose.

redwolph
redwolph

I love it..lol thanks for the laugh. Steve Jobs-- is a sad jobber. Being sent by and android user.

TGGIII
TGGIII

LOL - Loved the article. I think Jobs ability to filter the junk and get to the heart of a matter and make his point is what enables him to conceive the true needs fo a product. As was pointed out, Heiner's psuedo replys could have been sharper but why make people as upset as Jobs. The fact that Jobs does not speak the truth with grace may point to the need for charmschool but I, like many of the readers, remain a fan of someonw who thinks so clearly in a world that increasing values abiguity and compromise.

MacNewton
MacNewton

Jobs said " I got 40 Billion in cash, do you?"

abc123a
abc123a

This is a cool article. I really think you hit the nail on the head on how Steve Jobs would have replied to those questions - you only were a lot nicer :-). But who cares my Apple stock is going up and up and up and up and up....... you get the picture - right?

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I can see him in front of a courtroom now. His engineer on the stand holding a couple of dolls while illustrating to the court where Steve Jobs touched him. :D

Slayer_
Slayer_

What did we have before, CD players? Low battery life, and skipping, if you got one of the fancier ones with memory to avoid skipping, even less battery life. Some CD players boasted a 4 hour battery life... Ouch. Cassette players, almost the lowest of low quality, only slightly better than the 8 track player. But boasted 8 hours of battery life and was truly portable. Was even sturdy and some later models fit in your pocket. The 8 Track player, ewwwwwwwwww. The iPod is a vast improvement over the previous attempts at portable sound. The iPods biggest problem is iTunes and its degraded music quality. The iPod has more than enough processor and memory to run a lossless compression format, other than MP3. Yes, even the highest quality MP3 is not as good as a fresh CD. But as a portable format, its pretty damn good compared to what came before it. Also, headphones still suck, your average headphones won't let you tell the difference in sound quality. On my older MP3 player, its only a 128mb, I can fit 2 high quality CD's on it, or 4 low quality ones, without really telling a difference. VBR 64-128 and it sounds fine for almost everything. The better quality from a higher bitrate is almost unnoticeable. Occasionally it muddies up the metal, that's about it. Edit- Forgot to mention the lossless compression thing

dfrueh
dfrueh

The funniest thing about your comment is that not only is this not 'fake news'. Jon Stewart doesn't make 'fake news' either. He just makes fun of real news and points out when news stations are retarded. Namely Fox, because it's usually them who just set themselves up for it.

T0nz
T0nz

I'm not sure what's funnier, the original article or this. Thank you both for a great laugh, now let me get back to a pissed-off file server.

Kevin.Legrande
Kevin.Legrande

Why you bad people always pick on Apple? Have you never had fresh Applesauce with cinnamon and a pinch of lemon? Unfortunately is hard to call on though...

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

Sounds like you and your teammates have totally taken the article in the spirit in which it was intended. :-)

dfrueh
dfrueh

And you needed the "ease of use" of an iPOD? iTunes is far from easy, and as a matter of fact the cheaper and smaller Creative Zen, that i bought by fiancee a couple years ago is quite simple to use, with a full color screen and long battery life. It's sad that people just sit back and listen to marketing. "I'm a Mac." is the only thing that brought this company back from the grave after the initial iPod craze.. There's a lower case letter before an upper-case one in the same worD!!! isn't that so boss, man? Come on now people.

squirrellysiege
squirrellysiege

Really? You posted twice about this article. Do you ever look at yourself in the mirror and ask: Is this what I went into IT for? To scour tech boards and make sure people know you don't approve of what's being written? Read it, like it or hate it, then move on.

techrepublic
techrepublic

Seriously? Wow - not funny? Just say it isn't funny - you truly need to get over yourself. I'm glad he wrote it - I don't hate Apple, I don't hate Jobs... I just thought it was funny.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

[i]I think Jobs ability to filter the junk and get to the heart of a matter and make his point is what enables him to conceive the true needs fo a product. [/i] Don't you mean his ability to spew junk to make his point, as if it was the heart of the matter? His products don't meet the true needs of most people at all. i-Pod, who NEEDS the lowest possible quality music, in a limited player, at a cost, when far superior copies are available at little or no cost? i-Phone, who NEEDS multitouch instead of accuracy with an input device? i-Pad, wouldn't meeting the needs of a consumer include SOME connectivity options, besides their own proprietary add-on just to add a USB port? I'd say consumers are accepting what Apple is putting out, despite the mass shortcomings of the devices they provide. Don't tell me that you wouldn't WANT an i-Pad with a USB port. You may be able to live without it or work around it though. Don't tell me that you would rather have a poor quality and limited audio format, a player that has a proprietary battery instead of standard batteries you can recharge or carry spares, low output power, no bass response, no equalization etc. When others provide better players and more format options. This is just an example of how people lower expectations to meet what Apple provides, and Apple knows it too. What about an i-Phone? Limited apps, that are most free on other devices but you can buy them from the i-Store. Text input is SO incredibly limited all you have is an on screen keyboard?!? You couldn't even copy and paste with their first few releases! Maybe it works for those who just want to surf the web and look up the songs of tunes that are playing. 4 guys I hang out with that have them, all have other smartphones for their business use and just use i-Phones for monitoring weather satellites, looking up songs titles and hockey scores (which almost any FREE phone from your local provider does). They wouldn't have them if the company didn't provide them with free unlimited data, but then the company also buys them other devices that meet their enterprise needs. the iPhones are merely toys for staff it seems, nobody actually uses them for anything relevant. Jobs doesn't meet consumer needs, consumers lower their needs to work around what Jobs is offering.

nwallette
nwallette

It's refreshing, which is something that filters down into the product design as well. Like: Starting over with a brand-new UI catered to touch input. Telling people "No" with multitasking, until they found a good way to implement it. Responding to the complaints that antennas don't work well when you touch them with: "then don't touch them." The Entitled will disagree, but I think they take the whole "If you can't do it right, don't bother to do it at all" motif to an art form.

suncatTR
suncatTR

My Apple stock went up and up and up until it went down and down and down and crashed and burned. Caught it on the way up before it crashed and burned again. Rollercoasters are fun, except when tuition bills intrude.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

$2.73 today, so far but is hasn't closed yet of course. But real stocks climb with more strength. NASDAQ is up over $16.00 today, still to close too. I've gained a lot more from NASDAQ in the last three years than a full share costs in Apple today.

Murfski-19971052791951115876031193613182
Murfski-19971052791951115876031193613182

You're (not your) really on a roll today. You and Jason should get together for an Abbot & Costello duet. Are you old enough to remember them? Thanks for making my day better.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

You mean you think that i-Pod was the first portable MP3 player? Damn, I had a Samsung Yepp when i-Pods came out and it is STILL better than an i-Pod even with it's rather limited 256MB storage. Full equalization, Bass boost that really boosts, several preset and user customizable EQ's, plays anything (WAV, WMP, MP3, FLAC etc.) stores files like a removable hard drive, CRANKS (it really does pump out to a pair of AKG K-240's). I-Pod did nothing relevant, they took a good system and simplified it for the masses who just don't know any better. You are lucky to get 7-10% of the original recording quality with i-Tunes, it's like satellite radio, just so many people into it that nobody stops to really look into what they are losing. I had a friend put a CD in mar truck on the weekend, it lasted 3 minutes (at most), it was all muddied out at 128kbps. We listened for a couple of minutes and I gave him the choice, do you want it back or it goes out the window. He took it back, and tossed it out the window himself, sounded like crap compared to what is usually in the deck(we were in a busy parking lot that gets cleaned up anyway). The point is, if all you listen to is MP3's, your ability for critical listening is reduced a great deal. When you hear something else, your ears don't even know what they aren't hearing, or are hearing. Ears are like taste buds that way, your palette has to be trained, as does your hearing.

T0nz
T0nz

Touch?,Bravo; I don't think I have never heard anyone hit a subject so dead-on as you just did on every point. Over the last 6 months, I have sold my two Power Macs, and as soon as my AT&T contract is up, I am ditching my iPhone for a droid, probably an EVO. I don't think I have ever been as disappointed in a purchase as I am with my iPhone.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Give me a break! They bought out a company that couldn't compete in the touch screen marketplace because their ancient IR touch system couldn't stand up to real world testing against players like ELO Touch. To be exact, they tested it in an amusement park kiosk and there were so many false inputs that they didn't get their big contract and ended up going bankrupt. Their touch system is an absolute FARCE as far as touch technology goes. Sure Apple bought it cheap and added the A4 multi-touch chipset to it, but that's because it wasn't accurate enough for more precise input such as stylus, and thus has limited functionality in comparison. The major players in the enterprise mobile market all use similar screen systems, which make Apple's attempt look like a Fisher Price toy in comparison. To even suggest they pioneered such touch technology is a complete joke. One company can't compete because their product is outdated and inaccurate. Apple buys it, adds the multi-touch chipest and markets the hell out of it to the consumer level, and this makes Apple a pioneer?! Telling people NO to multitasking just means 'NO we can't do that yet', our phone is not up to snuff with the competition. If they actually stood behind your quote "if you can't do it right, don't do it at all" There would be no such thing as an iPod. They had one of the last players to market and it PALED hideously in the face of competitors. However, it was trendy at schools, college kids jumped on it and trendy marketing efforts made it popular. It certainly didn't get popular because it sounded better or did what other players did not. It was white and cool when MAC was known for cool hardware and Windows was the enemy. Sure you can call me anti-Apple, biased, a Windows/'nix fanboy or whatever you want, it doesn't change the fact that the only rebuttal anyone has, to defend Apple's shortcomings, is to dismiss them as biased or antiApple. Yeah, I'm anti any shite that doesn't stand up to others but still costs more and does less.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Let the Dead Cat Bounce. Good book, if you really want to trade and make money instead of just making brokers rich.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Low output power, no sound control, limited functionality and a cost tied to all the low end junk you fill it with. It doesn't even make the top 10 list. But it's white (or many colours now)it looks like MAC stuff and they are good computers (I won't knock MAC at all), all the kids in school have them! That last comment being their most advantageous selling point of all. "But Mom, ALL the kids have them, I HAVE to have one or they'll laugh at me" When you said previous techs, I thought you were implying there wasn't anything better previously, including MP3 technology. But as a FORMAT, digital music storage is a lot easier than carrying CD's, Tapes, 8-Tracks, my portable turntable is pretty cool though, it does skip when I'm walking though as it keeps bumping on my hip. :D

Slayer_
Slayer_

...Techs Its not the best MP3 player by far, even though it has the hardware potential to be.

Slayer_
Slayer_

as I recall, the iPods initial biggest advantage was battery life and size. Two big pluses for mobility. To bad Apple puts such significant effort into making it difficult to even load a song onto it. My 40 dollar MP3 player has many of the same shortcommings, but it was only 40 dollars vs 200. I always get a kick out of my mp3 player. When you first plug it into a new computer, it will try and fail to load a driver for it, it just pops up "Failed to load driver" and then windows opens it up in some sort of funky folder view that only shows the music and video folders. Kind of like a library function in Win7. Unplug it and plug it back in, and it shows now as a flash drive instead. Far better. In short, a horribly broken driver, is still easier to use than Apples BS.