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Palm CEO, former Apple exec says he's never used an iPhone

post #1 of 259
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In an interview at CES this week, Palm chief executive and former iPod chief Jon Rubinstein said his company doesn't pay much attention to Apple, and noted he has never even used an iPhone.

Rubinstein sat down with BoomTown's Kara Swisher to talk about his company's new lineup of webOS-based handsets due out this year. In the course of the conversation, Apple and its market-leading iPhone unsurprisingly came up.

Rubinstein said that although it sounds "really strange," his company doesn't pay much attention to Apple, and he doesn't worry about the iPhone. To that, Swisher responded: "I don't believe you." Rubinstein then claimed he has never touched an iPhone

"I don't have an iPhone," he said. "I've never even used one."

The Palm executive also spoke about the iTunes sync spat that developed over the course of 2009. Through a back-and-forth battle, Palm repeatedly attempted to circumvent Apple's software to allow its Pre handset to sync with iTunes. Subsequent updates to iTunes broke the capability.

The dispute finally came to an end after the USB Implementers Forum sided with Apple and chastised Palm for violating its policities. The USB-IF said Apple is within its right to limit iTunes syncing to proprietary hardware like the iPhone and iPod.

Though the fight has been dropped, Rubinstein this week said he still believes Apple was in the wrong.

"We don't think what Apple did is good for their customers," he said. "But Apple's going to do what Apple's going to do."

Rubinstein said his company has no plans to create their own syncing app -- something he feels the developer community would be better suited to handle. He also said he doesn't "see the point" of approaching Apple to create a joint solution.

Palm CEO Jon Rubinstein with Kara Swisher of BoomTown. Credit: AllThingsD

On Thursday, Palm announced two new handsets, the Pre Plus and the Pixi Plus, available exclusively for the Verizon network in the U.S. starting Jan. 25. The Pre Plus will offer an application called Palm Mobile Hotspot, which allows up to five devices to tether via Wi-Fi and gain 3G Internet access. The company also plans to add video recording to its existing webOS-based devices, the Palm Pre and the Palm Pixi.

In 2005, Rubinstein retired from Apple. He first began working with Apple co-founder Steve Jobs in 1990, when he joined the company NeXT. Jobs later brought him to Apple as senior vice president of hardware engineering. In his time there, he was instrumental in the creation of the iPod and the original iMac.
post #2 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Jon Rubinstein said his company doesn't pay much attention to Apple, and noted he has never even used an iPhone.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Rubinstein said that although it sounds "really strange," his company doesn't pay much attention to Apple, and he doesn't worry about the iPhone.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The Palm executive also spoke about the iTunes sync spat that developed over the course of 2009. Through a back-and-forth battle, Palm repeatedly attempted to circumvent Apple's software to allow its Pre handset to sync with iTunes.

Bit of a contradiction there if I'm not mistaken.
post #3 of 259
Made another killing in January! I will short PALM down to $1.
post #4 of 259
Quote:
Jon Rubinstein said his company doesn't pay much attention to Apple, and noted he has never even used an iPhone.

Sheesh. I was considering shorting Palm, that seals it. The CEO of a small player hasn't even used the market leading solution? Is that supposed to give us confidence?

Competitive analysis is key to success. It's one thing to consider yourself a leader and to not feel the need to copy other efforts, but to be willfully ignorant of what's going on in the market? Jesus. These guys are doomed.
post #5 of 259
I don't really care for palm, but am I the only one who hopes PALM stock goes way up so MJ Web can lose some money?
post #6 of 259
Wow. How can you claim you offer the best product, if you haven't at least checked out the competition? With that said, I do not believe the guy. Palm borrowed so much from Apple in creating the Pre, his claim seems preposterous. Further, it seems crazy that Palm first hitches a ride on iTunes, and after that fails, will not create a solution itself.
post #7 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

"We don't think what Apple did is good for their customers," he said. "But Apple's going to do what Apple's going to do."

Then why don't you do what's good for YOUR customers and create a solution of your own? Did this guy really work for Apple at one time? Sheesh.\
post #8 of 259
Quote:
Rubinstein said his company has no plans to create their own syncing app -- something he feels the developer community would be better suited to handle. He also said he doesn't "see the point" of approaching Apple to create a joint solution.

In other words, Rubenstein doesn't see the benefits of going about things the correct way. He doesn't even want to leverage iTunes' plugin system, as RIM does with their new Blackberry Desktop Software, to access iTunes and sync with Mac apps legitimately.

Either Palm's programmers are intensely incompetent or Rubenstein is just looking for headlines. With such low sales of the Pre and Pixi, it might just be the latter.
post #9 of 259
Those arent even good lies.


Quote:
Originally Posted by SpinDrift View Post

Bit of a contradiction there if I'm not mistaken.

He says not much, he doesnt use any absolute like not any, so it cant be quantified.
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post #10 of 259
Did anyone really think the CEO of Palm was gonna come and say "Yeah, the iPhone is really great. I love all the features and boy, talk about good design..."
post #11 of 259
A CEO that doesn't check out his competition?

That was an arrogant and stupid career move he made. If the CEO of my company would have said that, they would have been fired.
post #12 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by manfrommars View Post

Did anyone really think the CEO of Palm was gonna come and say "Yeah, the iPhone is really great. I love all the features and boy, talk about good design..."

Of course not, but there is a difference between praising your competition and stating that you pay no attention to your competition or their devices. I guess when your entire business is based on stealing from them its best to deny everything.
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post #13 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by manfrommars View Post

Did anyone really think the CEO of Palm was gonna come and say "Yeah, the iPhone is really great. I love all the features and boy, talk about good design..."

no--but he could say "I've used the iPhone, and while its a good product I think the functionality of the Pre is superior, blah blah. . ."

saying he's never used it just makes him look uninformed--and naive. neither of which is an attractive quality in a CEO.
post #14 of 259
This guy, along with that other clown Roger McNamee, is beginning to sound more like Ballmer every time he opens his mouth.
post #15 of 259
Rubinstein is a Liar. Even Bill Gates or Steve Ballmer will not say they never touched an iPhone, or doesn't pay attention to Apple.

There are probably dozens of iPhone disassembled at Palm's lab. This man is a damn liar. There is no phone company on the planet earth who has not disassembled an iPhone to see the "magic" inside.

Rubinstein is ashamed to admit that Apple is beating the pants off Palm. Screw him!
post #16 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

his company doesn't pay much attention to Apple, and he doesn't worry about the iPhone.



Maybe he doesn't but I'm sure the software writers for his company do. After all, they made the Pre sync with iTunes...several times after Apple release patches to prevent them from doing it. They used Apple's USB ID, for f*cks sake.
post #17 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Those aren’t even good lies.




He says “not much”, he doesn’t use any absolute like “not any”, so it can’t be quantified.

Ah solipsism haven't heard from you in awhile how are things in the ansible my friend?
.................................................. ...


John who? ohhhhhh John the traitor okay, isn't he the same guy that had the debut with McNamee Last year at D7 and made it known to the public that "APPLE WOULDN'T CARE, ABOUT OUR DEVICE SYNCING WITH iTunes" hmmmmm apple did care... Actually Apple cared enough that now John the traitor says "Developers are better equipped to write a syncing app for palm" ... well john that's pretty hard to do when you have just a handful of developers compared to even windows ... Now later in the conversation John the traitor says "where a small company, that developed WebOS*bc and we've made it scaleable to different platforms" what platforms John??... He needs to wake up and realize that he shouldn't have left Apple and now he's just a bitter CEO and is a Bad lier,..even steve ballmer admits to keeping an eye or should I say a photo copier on Apple. John is such in deep denial ... If I were him I'd go crawling back to Apple kissing Steves feet begging for a chance to comeback and be apart of something great Again .... But that's just me.

*bc = bull crap
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post #18 of 259
Palm = Irrelevant company with a stupid CEO at it's helm.
post #19 of 259
OMG! This guy is CEO and says he has never even laid hand on the competing product the dominates the market! I would sell all my stock in Palm if I believed this guy - not much to say about what's wrong with him saying this. Check him for brain wave activity, quick!
post #20 of 259
Palm's CEO won't be around much longer with statements like that. I once worked for a CEO who had the same "competition? What competition?" approach. Since then he's never kept a job longer than a couple of years; as he can't keep up with the real world. Glad I'm not a Palm stockholder.
post #21 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by Loup407 View Post

Glad I'm not a Palm stockholder.

I wish I bought Palm stock back when they announced the Pre a year ago. Stock jumped over 10x in 5 months. Still on high with 11% increase on Friday. Buy on rumour sell on fact! Looking for my next quick win at CES. I love Vegas!
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post #22 of 259
I'm quite sure he's just BS'ing in order to avoid any and all discourse about Apple. Because that would only lead to comparisons with Apple. Something everyone else in the industry would like to avoid, I'm sure.
post #23 of 259
that he's never used an iPhone. My 2 1/2 year old has used an iPhone. What a moron.
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post #24 of 259
You know that Steve Jobs has probably tinkered with the Pre, Android, and Nexus One. This is competitive intel, and most people do it. Rubinstein is either a liar or a bad CEO.
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post #25 of 259
Jon Rubinstein might never have used an iPhone, but everyone involved in the Palm Pre sure has!

What Rubenstein seems to be claiming is that he's too busy being a cool CEO dude to actually pay attention to what his company DOES. (Plus I think he's a liar. We don't pay much attention to Apple indeed. Yeah, THAT'S a company in good hands!)
post #26 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrob View Post

no--but he could say "I've used the iPhone, and while its a good product I think the functionality of the Pre is superior, blah blah. . ."

saying he's never used it just makes him look uninformed--and naive. neither of which is an attractive quality in a CEO.

It also means he's useless at thinking on his feet in an interview, which is a necessary qualification for a CEO.

Moreover, it makes him sound like a hopeless twat who can't even lie convincingly. Which, come to think of it, is another necessary qualification for a CEO.
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post #27 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

"We don't think what Apple did is good for their customers," he said. "But Apple's going to do what Apple's going to do."

Correction: "We don't think what Apple did is good for OUR customers because PALM doesn't have an application like iTunes and Apple, by not allowing our product to freely sync with their ecosystem, really limits our ability to piggy-back off of their work. It is especially inconvenient to me because I have never touched an iPhone and personally use the Pre. But Apple's going to do what Apple's going to do."
post #28 of 259
This explains their success or lack of it.
post #29 of 259
"I don't have an iPhone," he said. "I've never even used one."

"We don't think what Apple did is good for their customers," he said. "But Apple's going to do what Apple's going to do."

wow very interesting...sounds like he gets paid a lot of money to warm the ceo chair...
post #30 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

"I don't have an iPhone," he said. "I've never even used one."

Yeah, I agree with all you guys. He sounds like a Republican that says things like he's talking to people who are too uninformed to notice the crazy statements. We're all tech industry people listening! Hello!

What popped into my head was "Hey, all your customers are going to be looking at the iPhone vs. <your products> when they shop and compare. Shouldn't you be doing the same thing if you expect to be competitive?"

A dog is a reflection of it's owner, right?
post #31 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

This guy, along with that other clown Roger McNamee, is beginning to sound more like Ballmer every time he opens his mouth.

And you look like the elitist a$$ you are every time you type. I enjoy coming to this forum because I have a Touch, but I despise your every post. I have a Pre and I'm happy with it. Yeah, I'd have an iPhone, but I get a 25% discount on Sprint through work. I'm cost conscious, and like saving $60/month on my family plan. I'm the bottom of the barrel consumer you so despise. You know.... the kind of person that a PC caters to, and the kind of person that you don't want buying your precious Mac. I've read enough of your posts to know you don't want a low-life like me in your market share.

Like I said... I'm happy with my Pre and WebOS. Personally, I feel like it's the next best OS outside of the iPhone's OS. There are others like me, so you can get off your holier-than-thou high horse!
post #32 of 259
This guy is just bitter. I don't know how you cannot pay attention to what Apple is doing. Regardless of its market share, a good business needs to know what competitors are doing in order to survive. This just makes him look like a poor sport.
post #33 of 259
You would think Rubinstein just raped everyones mother, wife, and daughter with the way you guys are acting lol.

I find it to be funny that you guys attack the man who helped Apple climb itself out the damn grave it was in. I mean if the guy is such an awful person, i wonder why Steve Jobs would ask him to work for him not ONCE but TWICE? I guess because he's not riding the Apple train anymore its time to go into crucifixion mode?

Anyways his comments are typical of a CEO, they are watching the competition because every company is always watching their competition.

It is a shame that they wont do their own syncing software, but drag and drop does work (i use a BB so im used to it) and there are plenty of other phones that employ the same method so it matters not. I guess if they wont let them sync, then they dont want anything to do with it in any form.

Here's hoping for a significant hardware revision later this year. Lose the damn keyboard on your flagship model Rubinstein.
post #34 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by OC4Theo View Post

Rubinstein is a Liar. Even Bill Gates or Steve Ballmer will not say they never touched an iPhone, or doesn't pay attention to Apple.

There are probably dozens of iPhone disassembled at Palm's lab. This man is a damn liar. There is no phone company on the planet earth who has not disassembled an iPhone to see the "magic" inside.

Rubinstein is ashamed to admit that Apple is beating the pants off Palm. Screw him!

Ding ding ding!

We have a winner!!!

This is the correct analysis.
post #35 of 259
How can you tell when Jon Rubinstein is lying?

HIS LIPS ARE MOVING!!!

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post #36 of 259
He made his bundle at Apple and retired. This Palm thing is just something he is doing to keep from going bonkers from idleness. Whether it succeeds or fails is secondary to him. His work at Palm is like me and other retirees puttering in the garage. He doesn't really care; why should we?
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post #37 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post

He made his bundle at Apple and retired. This Palm thing is just something he is doing to keep from going bonkers from idleness. Whether it succeeds or fails is secondary to him. His work at Palm is like me and other retirees puttering in the garage. He doesn't really care; why should we?

Well apparently his thing is dying companies, because its the reason he went to Apple when asked.
post #38 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post

He made his bundle at Apple and retired. This Palm thing is just something he is doing to keep from going bonkers from idleness.

Then it was too late. His comments are bonkers.
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post #39 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vital0gy View Post

And you look like the elitist a$$ you are every time you type. I enjoy coming to this forum because I have a Touch, but I despise your every post. I have a Pre and I'm happy with it. Yeah, I'd have an iPhone, but I get a 25% discount on Sprint through work. I'm cost conscious, and like saving $60/month on my family plan. I'm the bottom of the barrel consumer you so despise. You know.... the kind of person that a PC caters to, and the kind of person that you don't want buying your precious Mac. I've read enough of your posts to know you don't want a low-life like me in your market share.

Like I said... I'm happy with my Pre and WebOS. Personally, I feel like it's the next best OS outside of the iPhone's OS. There are others like me, so you can get off your holier-than-thou high horse!

Who are you?? Are you McNamee?? or Rubeinstein?? .... Take your "I'm a PC" mentality AND "I actually like my pre/ I think it's the next best OS" and preach elsewhere man... Your in a forum and room where... APPLE USERS HAVE THE BEST Phone OS (BTW we don't "think" its the best WE KNOW it's the best ... If you compare any PC to APPLE you'll see spec for spec that Apple is either in-line or cheaper then its competition in the same categories (Don't be one of those people who compare netbooks to Apple notebooks).

Hey I'm curious, How many Apps does WEB BC have??
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post #40 of 259
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post

He made his bundle at Apple and retired. This Palm thing is just something he is doing to keep from going bonkers from idleness. Whether it succeeds or fails is secondary to him. His work at Palm is like me and other retirees puttering in the garage. He doesn't really care; why should we?

You're probably right but that a bad reason to be at a company then, you need to be the soul of your company to make it succeed.

Sprints talent scouts are terrible if that's the case
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