According to the Associated Press (via Winnipeg Free Press), Google’s Eric Schmidt attended a press conference during his first visit to South Korea since 2007 on Tuesday where, among other things, he was asked his opinion on Steve Jobs’ claims that Android is a “stolen product”. While calling Jobs a “fantastic human being” and saying he is still “very sad and recovering from the sense of loss”, he had this to say regarding claims that Google ripped off key features of the iPhone for Android:

“I decided not to comment on comments that are written in the book after his death. I don’t think it’s right…Most people would agree that Google is a great innovator, and I would also point out that the Android efforts started before the iPhone efforts. And that’s all I have to say.” 

It was revealed prior to the release of the authorized Steve Jobs bio penned by author Walter Isaacson that Jobs shared with Isaacson his opinions on Android’s blatant copying of innovations Apple first debuted in the iPhone. Here’s the full quote from the book:

“Our lawsuit is saying, “Google, you fucking ripped off the iPhone, wholesale ripped us off.” Grand theft. I will spend my last dying breath if I need to, and I will spend every penny of Apple’s $40 billion in the bank, to right this wrong. I’m going to destroy Android, because it’s a stolen product. I’m willing to go to thermonuclear war on this. They are scared to death, because they know they are guilty. Outside of Search, Google’s products—Android, Google Docs—are shit.”

Cross-posted on

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6 Responses to “Eric Schmidt: “Android efforts started before the iPhone efforts. And that’s all I have to say””

  1. Stefano says:

    In fact so many things in iOS 5 are blatant ripoffs from Android (notification bar anyone?) and so was the window based concept SJ ripped off and improved from PARC's. And the fact that it is a phone, it has distributed third party apps (which SJ didn't even want to allow initially), has icons and a main hardware button doesn't make it a rip off.
    He was the first to embrace the sneaky-brilliance attitude in business.
    Plus saying Android is shit is just childish. On good hardware Android is a brilliant mobile device OS, and is way less claustrophobic than iOS can ever be without a jailbreak.
    I love Apple products but all this legal litigiousness is getting tiresome and is distracting the industry from fully concentrating on the thing they should care most for, innovation.

    • argonaut says:

      The "window based concept SJ ripped off and improved from PARC's"

      Get you facts straight. Apple gave XEROX $1million of Apple shares for that information, you dunce.

      I agree with your points about litigation, but maybe Google shouldn't have ripped off Java from Oracle in the first place and thought they could get away with it..

      Best to keep quiet and appear a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.

  2. pong lenis says:

    I can't see much of a copy. I use iPhone and Android and they both feel totally different.

  3. Mike says:

    Android Inc was founded in 2003 and purchased by Google in 2005

    Apple applied for iPhone trademarks in Australia, UK, etc in 2002

  4. Taylor Anthony. says:

    Even if Android started before the iPhone, the completely copied the hell out of it after it came out.

  5. Mike says:

    Android Inc was founded in 2003 and purchased by Google in 2005

    iPhone was trademarked by Apple in Australia, UK, etc in 2002, and who knows how long before that they started planning…