Gates sees IBM not Google as top Microsoft rival

Filed under: — By Aviran Mordo @ 9:51 am

Media coverage focuses on Microsoft Corp.’s competition with Google Inc., but Chairman Bill Gates sees IBM and not the Web search leader as its biggest challenger.

Microsoft faces a host of competitors ranging from Sony Corp. to Apple Computer Inc. to Nokia in its quest to control the next generation of software, Gates said in an interview on Wednesday ahead of his keynote speech at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

“People tend to get over focused on one of our competitors. We’ve always seen that,” said Gates, comparing the potential threat of Google’s search capabilities to past competitors such as Internet browser Netscape and Sun Microsystems Inc.’s Java programming language.

“I’m never going to change the press’ view about what the cool company to write about is. That’s Google number 1 and Apple number 2. Too bad for Nokia, Sony and all those others.”

Google, extending beyond its dominant position in search, offers a variety of Web software that ranges from communications to e-commerce, all of which poses a potential threat to Microsoft.

Asked if Google represents the most formidable threat of the company’s 30-year history, Gates replied with a curt “No.”

“The biggest company in the computer industry by far is IBM. They have the four times the employees that I have, way more revenues than I have. IBM has always been our biggest competitor. The press just doesn’t like to write about IBM,” said Gates.

Source: Reuters


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