Here are some of the most controversial quotes from Steve Ballmer, the former CEO of Microsoft
- “Linux is a cancer that attaches itself in an intellectual property sense to everything it touches.” This quote was made in 2001, when Ballmer was interviewed by the Chicago Sun-Times. He was expressing his disdain for the open source operating system and its potential threat to Microsoft’s dominance. He also claimed that Linux violated 228 patents and that Microsoft had a “respectful” relationship with intellectual property owners.2
- “There’s no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share. No chance.” This quote was made in 2007, when Ballmer was interviewed by USA Today. He was dismissing the newly launched Apple device as a niche product that was too expensive and lacked a keyboard. He also said he preferred Microsoft’s software to be in 60% or 70% of the phones, rather than 2% or 3%, which is what he predicted Apple would get.
- “The Internet Was Designed For The PC. The Internet Is Not Designed For The iPhone.” This quote was made in 2009, when Ballmer was speaking at a conference in New York. He was criticizing Apple’s approach to mobile web browsing and claiming that Microsoft’s Windows Mobile platform offered a better user experience. He also said that people who wanted to surf the web on a phone should buy a netbook instead.
- “You don’t need to be a computer scientist to use a Windows Phone. I think you do to use an Android phone.”1 This quote was made in 2011, when Ballmer was speaking at the Web 2.0 conference in San Francisco. He was mocking Google’s Android operating system as being too complex and confusing for average users. He also said that Windows Phone was more elegant and intuitive.
- “Google’s not a real company. It’s a house of cards.” This quote was made in 2012, when Ballmer was interviewed by Vanity Fair magazine. He was expressing his skepticism about Google’s long-term viability and accusing it of being a one-trick pony that relied on advertising revenue. He also said that Microsoft had more diversified businesses and more innovation.
- “We’re firmly behind Zune.”1 This quote was made in 2007, when Ballmer was speaking at the All Things D conference in California. He was defending Microsoft’s music player device, which was launched as a competitor to Apple’s iPod. He also said that Zune had a loyal fan base and a unique social feature that allowed users to share songs wirelessly.
- “We built a few more devices than we could sell.”1 This quote was made in 2013, when Ballmer was speaking at an internal company meeting. He was admitting that Microsoft had overestimated the demand for its Surface tablet, which was launched as a competitor to Apple’s iPad. He also said that Microsoft had to take a $900 million write-down on its inventory of unsold devices.
- “Windows machines will not be trucks.”1 This quote was made in 2010, when Ballmer was speaking at the All Things D conference in California. He was responding to a comment made by Apple’s Steve Jobs, who likened the switch from PCs to tablets like that from trucks to cars. Ballmer argued that Windows PCs would remain relevant and popular, and that tablets were just another form factor.
- “All in, baby! We are winning, winning, winning, winning.”1 This quote was made in 2011, when Ballmer was speaking at the Web 2.0 conference in San Francisco. He was boasting about Microsoft’s cloud services business and its competition with Google. He also said that Microsoft had more customers, more revenue and more profit than Google in the cloud space.2
- “Developers, developers, developers…”1 This quote was made in 2000, when Ballmer was speaking at a Microsoft developer conference in Seattle. He was trying to energize and motivate the audience by repeatedly chanting the word “developers”. He also jumped around the stage and sweated profus