Why is Microsoft bad-mouthing Apple?

From Mark Gurman's "Apple and Microsoft’s Rivalry Had Cooled. Now It’s Back and Getting Testier" ($) posted Saturday on Bloomberg News:

[Last November] Microsoft began bad-mouthing Apple to regulators, saying the company’s App Store was anti-competitive. The Redmond, Washington, software giant had thrown in its lot with Epic Games Inc., which was suing Apple for booting its Fornite title from the App Store and accusing the iPhone maker of monopolistic behavior. A Microsoft executive has since testified against Apple at the trial, now in its second week, telling the court that Apple’s tight control of its App Store had hurt Microsoft’s own gaming efforts.

The tensions are unlikely to ease once a verdict comes down because Apple and Microsoft are both looking to dominate the next big things in tech—from artificial intelligence and cloud computing to gaming, tablets, custom processors and mixed-reality headsets.

The renewed antipathy between Apple and Microsoft started about a year ago. Microsoft had developed a cloud gaming service for iPhones and iPads called xCloud. One app would let users pay a monthly fee to Microsoft and stream dozens of different gaming titles from the cloud. The service was supposed to do for gaming what Netflix did for video, appease gamers and turn Apple devices into a more powerful gaming platform backed by Xbox, one of the hottest names in the industry.

But Microsoft never launched the service in its intended form, having failed to persuade Apple to loosen App Store rules forbidding all-in-one gaming services...

Around the same time, Microsoft President Brad Smith began urging U.S. and European antitrust regulators to examine Apple’s practices. “They impose requirements that increasingly say there is only one way to get on to our platform and that is to go through the gate that we ourselves have created,” Smith told a Politico reporter. He added that he considered Apple’s behavior worse than the actions that landed his company in the antitrust hot seat more than 20 years ago.

My take: Apple has certainly done its share of Microsoft bashing, but not much lately. The only quote Gurman offers -- nearly 10 years old -- is Steve Jobs likening iTunes on Windows to "giving a glass of ice water to somebody in hell."


  1. Jerry Doyle said:
    I question seriously if any of these anti-competitive complaints from tech peers over Apple’s running its App Store would exists if Apple’s IB of 1 plus billion higher economic healthy users didn’t flourish as it does and continues to do. One reason Apple has built that monumental IB is Apple’s meticulous care of protecting its users and giving them a premium experience and confidence their security and privacy will be protected.

    May 15, 2021
    • Fred Stein said:
      Agree Jerry. One word, safety.

      People default to Apple because they do the best at protecting us, and our chilled, from predators, stalkers, financial fraudsters, and more.

      May 15, 2021
  2. Fred Stein said:
    Apple has already won the mobile ‘wars’. Despite having approx 15% shipments market share, it has 60% monetizable market share. Microsoft lost the mobile platfrom.

    A larger tug of war has been going on in tech since the 80’s, i.e. the thin client vs fat client strategy. Cloud represent thin client strategy. Apple has gone all in with fat client. Their investments in their deep stack cannot be matched by anyone.

    Microsoft knows they lost. They seek legislation, regulation, and adjudication, to fight back.

    Ironic: Apple’s thin devices are the ‘fat’ client.

    May 15, 2021
  3. Gregg Thurman said:
    I believe MSFT is crying foul now because of the M Series processors. They see the same thing we see, the beginnings of a paradigm shift away from WinTEL to M Series powered Macs. It might take a while (10 years?), but who wants to give up a majority stake in 15% of their company?

    M Series is going to make Wintels obsolete because they perform much, much better and have the Apple cache of security, ease of use and instant interoperability between/with all other Apple products.

    If Apple were ever to drop the price of its products (including developer commissions) 10% there would be no Android or Windows alternatives. Now THAT would be an anti-trust violation. The prospects of that have to be scaring the crap out of some people.

    May 15, 2021
  4. Kirk DeBernardi said:

    “They impose requirements that increasingly say there is only one way to get on to our platform and that is to go through the gate that we ourselves have created.”

    Now isn’t THAT a familiar credo?

    You’re using an accurate description of the matrix of your OS superiority as a whacking stick against today’s 15% marketshare Apple?!

    The Microsoft gall (balls?) still shines.

    May 15, 2021
  5. Kirk DeBernardi said:
    (BTW — PED…love the graphic you choose for this one.)

    May 15, 2021

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