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Ballmer: Computer Scientists Needed to Use Android

By - Source: The Telegraph | B 66 comments

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer says consumers need to be computer scientists to use Android.

During the annual Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer was asked to compare the appeal of a phone powered by Windows Phone to one with Google's Android OS installed. Naturally Ballmer removed the gloves and used his fists of steel against the rival operating system, indicating that users need to be a computer scientist to navigate through its interface and sea of icons.

"You don’t need to be a computer scientist to use a Windows phone and you do to use and Android phone," he said. "It is hard for me to be excited about the Android phones."

Recent numbers seemingly disagree. In August, around 43-percent of smartphone owners actually owned an Android device. During a three month period prior to that, 56-percent of smartphone buyers chose an Android device followed by 28-percent that chose Apple's iPhone. Trailing behind Google and Apple was RIM's BlackBerry with a 9-percent share. Microsoft's Windows Phone and other mobile operating systems fell within the "Other" 6-percent chasm.

Does that mean 48-percent of smartphone owners are computer scientists, or is Microsoft's Windows Phone geared towards the simple-minded? To Ballmer's defense, Android is installed on a huge number of smartphones whereas Windows Phone is currently limited to ten devices. Still, Apple has managed to retain second place with just two or three active models on the market.

Following his comment about Android, Ballmer said that Apple is a good competitor, but a different one, praising the company's latest innovation, Siri. But he also said that Windows Phone devices are better because they put the user's need right on the device's front page.

"Both [an iPhone and a Windows phone] are going to feel very good in your hand and both going to look very beautiful physically," he said. "But when you grab a Windows phone and use it… your information is front and center… and you don’t have to scroll through seas of icons and blah blah blah."

"A Windows phone gets things done," he added.

Ballmer also admitted that Windows Phone needed to compete better on price with Android handsets and start supporting cheaper models. He also said that Microsoft has no plans to produce its own smartphone to go head to head with Apple, but will instead remain focused on "enabling hardware innovation."

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Top Comments
  • 23 Hide
    husker , October 19, 2011 9:14 PM
    "But he [Ballmer] also said that Windows Phone devices are better because they put the user's need right on the device's front page."

    Last time I checked, my android phone has all kinds of widgets and icons to put anywhere I want. And how does he think he knows what my needs are anyway?
  • 20 Hide
    AbdullahG , October 19, 2011 9:13 PM
    You just suck at using phones Ballmer. You're a MS CEO, so you're going to be bias when comparing Windows phones to Android phones.
  • 16 Hide
    legacy7955 , October 19, 2011 9:37 PM
    I like these stories on Ballmer just because I get to see his many goofy photos .

    Hey Tom's can you create an article specifically focusing on Ballmer photos?

    BTW I am a Windows OS fan, but I think Ballmer is a wacky guy for the CEO of Microsoft.
Other Comments
    Display all 66 comments.
  • 20 Hide
    AbdullahG , October 19, 2011 9:13 PM
    You just suck at using phones Ballmer. You're a MS CEO, so you're going to be bias when comparing Windows phones to Android phones.
  • 23 Hide
    husker , October 19, 2011 9:14 PM
    "But he [Ballmer] also said that Windows Phone devices are better because they put the user's need right on the device's front page."

    Last time I checked, my android phone has all kinds of widgets and icons to put anywhere I want. And how does he think he knows what my needs are anyway?
  • 6 Hide
    jacobdrj , October 19, 2011 9:21 PM
    husker"But he [Ballmer] also said that Windows Phone devices are better because they put the user's need right on the device's front page."Last time I checked, my android phone has all kinds of widgets and icons to put anywhere I want. And how does he think he knows what my needs are anyway?

    Steve Jobbs did, why not Stevie B?
  • -6 Hide
    mlopinto2k1 , October 19, 2011 9:24 PM
    husker"But he [Ballmer] also said that Windows Phone devices are better because they put the user's need right on the device's front page."Last time I checked, my android phone has all kinds of widgets and icons to put anywhere I want. And how does he think he knows what my needs are anyway?
    Why even use "he" if your going to address Ballmer personally anyway? You would have saved 5 spaces just addressing him in the first place ;) 
  • 16 Hide
    legacy7955 , October 19, 2011 9:37 PM
    I like these stories on Ballmer just because I get to see his many goofy photos .

    Hey Tom's can you create an article specifically focusing on Ballmer photos?

    BTW I am a Windows OS fan, but I think Ballmer is a wacky guy for the CEO of Microsoft.
  • -6 Hide
    badaxe2 , October 19, 2011 9:39 PM
    Isn't it kinda ironic how Windows used to be the most user-unfriendly platform back in the 90's? Then with Xbox 360 it seems they started going the Apple route.
  • 6 Hide
    soo-nah-mee , October 19, 2011 9:40 PM
    I really like my WP7, but I only got it because I got a new phone off contract for $100.

    Android is awesome. It's not hard to use. Okay, it may not be quite as intuitive as a Windows phone (or iOS for that matter, but it is far more versatile and fun to use IMO.

    ICS is the SHIT.
  • 7 Hide
    soo-nah-mee , October 19, 2011 9:42 PM
    BTW, I'm glad that the newest android version can be shortened into an acronym. I was sick of talking about desserts.
  • -5 Hide
    13thmonkey , October 19, 2011 9:44 PM
    I tried to help a friend with a modern windows phone, really difficult to get to grips with imho, put me off there and then, I wanted a nice big settings button i could have a look around inside of.
  • 5 Hide
    Anonymous , October 19, 2011 9:47 PM
    MS under Ballmer has become an embarrassment.

    Someone give this bozo the boot now, for the sake of Windows, for the sake of Microsoft, and for the sake of the evolving web.
  • 5 Hide
    amk-aka-Phantom , October 19, 2011 9:48 PM
    WhysoBluepandabearNo! First off, if you can't pick up an Android phone, and within a few days become a general master at it, then you're just dumb. Yes, you're dumb. You should realistically be able to pick up almost any device, and with enough time to test and play around, be able to get the general gist of it. This is called: Intelligence: The ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills.Use what skills you know about computers and applications, and now apply them towards a smaller, handheld device that runs on the same concept and principle. If you can't figure this out, then sorry, you need to be left behind. I also like how the older generation mumbles stupid ass comments like "Oh, you were born into this sorta stuff, so that's why it's so easy for you". Um, no dumbass, I wasn't born with a smartphone and computer in my hand, I was born a young, curious child that didn't WILLFULLY BLOCK OUT TECHNOLOGY, but instead embraced it with an eager mind. Now that it's important, I just so happen to be inclined with all of it, while you decided you didn't need it, nor wanted a part in it. As an adult, with a full capacity brain and education, YOU actually had the edge and advantage when it comes to technology. Ideally, you, as the adult, should be MUCH better with technology than the younger generation. Why? Because if you just paid attention, you would've started when everything first came around, and from there on out, follow all the transitions and upgrades to technology. But nope, you blocked it out, and now need a crash course. Oh well.


    This exactly. I'm sick of repeating this to everyone. And Ballmer is stupid. Android is simple. The whole fuss about one OS or another being "more user-friendly" is bull$h!t, every OS on the market today is simple to use (excluding various Linux distros which keep adding more and more bloatware with every update; I'm talking real consumer OSs).
  • 0 Hide
    ithurtswhenipee , October 19, 2011 10:00 PM
    According to Ballmer the world must be over run with computer scientists. How many Android handsets are activated every day? Computer scientists are a pretty smart bunch. They need to be in order use Android right? Did Ballmer just make an inadvertent remark about the intelligence of WP7 users?
  • 5 Hide
    soo-nah-mee , October 19, 2011 10:03 PM
    13thmonkeyI tried to help a friend with a modern windows phone, really difficult to get to grips with imho, put me off there and then, I wanted a nice big settings button i could have a look around inside of.
    Well, there is a nice big settings button. You can pin it to your home screen if u want.
  • 1 Hide
    Murissokah , October 19, 2011 10:09 PM
    Oh, so that's what it takes to be a computer scientist at Microsoft? No wonder they make such great software.
  • -1 Hide
    Anonymous , October 19, 2011 10:38 PM
    The big recurring theme at MS is to get you doing things their way. Comparing Android to WP7 is like comparing PHP to ASP.NET. PHP is simple, efficient, and allows you to echo out raw HTML that allows you to easily interact with the database backend of your choice. ASP.NET takes away everything, adds their own non-standard controls, and tries to force you into writing C# that creates non-HTML webforms and controls which then somehow get re-assembled into not-quite-standards-compliant HTML.
  • 5 Hide
    otacon72 , October 19, 2011 10:45 PM
    MurissokahOh, so that's what it takes to be a computer scientist at Microsoft? No wonder they make such great software.


    Since their software runs on 98% of the world's computers I'd say they do make pretty good software....what a moron.
  • 6 Hide
    otacon72 , October 19, 2011 10:47 PM
    Ballmer will always get the last laugh because every time you buy an Android device $15 goes in Microsoft's coffers...LOL
  • 0 Hide
    Murissokah , October 19, 2011 10:51 PM
    otacon72Since their software runs on 98% of the world's computers I'd say they do make pretty good software....what a moron.


    Since we are talking about phone software, I fail to see your point.
  • 5 Hide
    Yuka , October 19, 2011 10:54 PM
    Thanks Ballmer, now I can point fingers to people using WP xD!

    "Hey, u're using a dork's phone! Ballmer says so, and he makes that stuff" lol

    Cheers!
  • 2 Hide
    milktea , October 19, 2011 11:09 PM
    There's an app call "Background Noise" in Windows Marketplace. I wonder if Ballmer wrote that app, because it sounded like him. Just a bunch of background "Noise". :D 
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