Apple CEO Tim Cook continued the company’s predilection for ripping its competitors, criticizing the Surface, Microsoft’s new tablet, in a call with analysts on Thursday.
“I haven't personally played with the Surface yet, but what we're reading about it is it's a fairly compromised, confusing product,” Cook said.
Microsoft debuted Windows 8 on the new tablet at an event on Thursday. CEO Steve Ballmer has promised the operating system will revolutionize the PC industry.
Apple thinks otherwise, maintaining that tablets will replace PCs. The success of the iPad is one reason Microsoft finally moved into the tablet market this summer with the Surface.
The two companies have antagonized one another for decades as rivals Bill Gates and Steve Jobs traded jabs and product launches.
Despite maintaining his amicable, even-keeled demeanor, Cook jumped into the fray, comparing the Surface to a flying car on Thursday.
“One of the toughest things you do with a product is to make hard tradeoffs and decide what a product should be,” Cook (right) said. “We’ve really done that with the iPad. I suppose I could design a car that could fly and float, but I don’t think it would do all those things very well.”
After what was considered a disappointing earnings report for the world’s most valuable public company, Cook remained bullish about his own products. He blamed lower profits on the sheer number of new products Apple introduced in the past few months, from new iPods and iPhones to new Mac computers to the iPad mini. Those products are more expensive than existing ones, reducing profit margins.
The launch of the iPad mini comes as the competition in the tablet market continues to intensify, from the Surface (a larger tablet like the iPad) to Google’s Nexus (a seven-inch tablet).
Cook went on to criticize many other tablets in the marketplace, particularly the smaller ones that spurred the introduction of the iPad mini.
"Let me be clear: We would not make one of the seven-inch tablets,” Cook said. “We don't think they're good products, and we would never make one. Not just because it's seven inches, but for many reasons. One of them, however, is size."