Apple CEO slams inferior Android and Windows RT tablets
Consumers don't want ‘confusing’ Android and Windows RT-powered tablets, according to Apple CEO Tim Cook
Apple CEO Tim Cook isn’t impressed by cheap Android tablets from the likes of Asus, Samsung, and Amazon. He’s also not to keen on Microsoft’s newly released Surface RT tablet either.
Business Week sat down for a chat with one of the most powerful men in technology. Throughout the chat, which you can read in full here, Cook alludes to Apple’s long-awaited HDTV and details why he thinks all other tablets fall short of the iPad.
On the subject of Microsoft and Samsung’s recent tablet offerings, Cook said: ‘what I see, for me, is that some of these are confusing, multiple OSs with multiple UIs. They steer away from simplicity.’
Apple’s iPad is all about simplicity – the UI itself has barely changed since 2007. But there’s more to it than that, says Cook. Consumers also want tablet-optimised applications, and lots of them. You don’t get this on Android or Windows RT and this, according to Cook, is why usage is so low.
‘We have 275,000-plus apps that have been optimized for the tablet. If you just stretch out a smartphone app on a tablet, it’s an awful experience. It’s not what customers want. I think it’s another reason that usage is so low on these other tablets,’ said Cook.
Cook also discussed his view on the ‘affordable tablet’ model popularised by Google and Amazon during 2011/12.
‘What I strongly believe is that many people that are doing so [buying cheap tablets] might feel good initially if they pay a low price, but will bring it home and start to use it, and they’re no longer satisfied. That good feeling is gone. And those people don’t repeat purchases.’
Locking consumers into an ecosystem is key and it’s a ploy Apple has been incredibly successful with during the past several years. But it will never push out a cheap product just for the hell of it – that’s just not its style, according to Cook.
‘We never went into that category. We never put any time into it. A great product doesn’t mean an expensive product. It means a fair price. The iPad mini is all the way down to $329. This isn’t an expensive product. So when we can do great products and achieve a great price, we feel great.’
‘But what we wouldn’t do is say, “We’ve got to have something for this price, and then let’s see what we can do for it.” That’s not how we think. We think about the product and making a great product that we want to use.’
Cook even went as far as describing current low-price tablets, presumably referring to the Nexus 7 and Amazon Kindle Fire HD, as the second coming of the short-lived netbook phenomenon.
‘Look at netbooks. Many people thought netbooks were the coolest thing ever. Many companies hyped them. In fact, the sales boomed, and then what happened? They crashed, because they were awful! They were flimsy products with crappy, cramped keyboards. They were underpowered. They were just awful.’
Cook also discussed the possibility of Apple venturing further into the TV market during the interview, giving us our first real confirmation that Apple is indeed working on an iOS-powered Siri-enabled HDTV.
Check out our first-look video demo of the iPad Mini...
And the Nexus 10 review below, which doesn't seem all that inferior to us if we're honest. Sorry, Tim.