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Steve Jobs questions Google’s openness, Andy Rubin counters in comical tweet

October 19, 2010 | by Andrew Kameka

Android, Android OS


Steve Jobs is running scared because of Android. We’ve always known that Jobs wasn’t a fan of Google’s mobile operating system, but he typically took a dismissive tone, patting Android on the head and shooing away the silly competitor. Now that Android has proven to be a more than credible threat to Apple’s iPhone/iOS, Jobs has been a bit more catty.

Listen to the five-minute anti-Android tirade that Jobs delivered during yesterday’s Apple earnings call. Sounding like a nervous high-schooler delivering a book report in front of the class (dramatic license), Jobs says that iOS devices are activated more often than Android devices and the 300,000 apps in the App Store greatly outpace that of the 90,000-strong Android Market.

I expected Jobs to use those hard numbers to support his belief that Android is no threat to Apple, but then he got into the discussion of Google’s “disingenuous” open talk. Jobs then said that when “Most people think of open, they think of Windows, which is available on a variety of different devices.”

Jobs cites TweetDeck’s recent stats that show the app has to “contend” with more than 100 different versions of Android (Ed note: they’re actually contending with more than 100 different custom ROM’s, not versions of Android), showing Apple’s model is better because developers only have to support two versions of software. That’s one way to frame the conversation, but it actually proves the point that Android is open since people have choice and are not limited to picking between two identical experiences. I would never purchase a MOTOBLUR phone, but plenty of people love it. Options are good.

And what does Google VP of Engineering Andy Rubin, the Godfather of Android, have to say about this? Just one funny tweet explaining open by writing a few lines of code that represent making a directory that contains Android’s source code. Note: This is not a verified Twitter account, but TechCrunch claims to have confirmed that it is Rubin’s account.

the definition of open: “mkdir android ; cd android ; repo init -u git:// ; repo sync ; make”less than a minute ago via web

via [Gizmodo]