Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak took to Slashdot on Monday to answer questions from readers on topics ranging from his feelings about Apple and iTunes, to his thoughts on jailbreaking and lawsuits.
“Apple’s real rise from the small market-share Macintosh company to the iProducts of today began with iTunes and the iPod,” wrote Woz when asked how he feels about Apple. “This turned out to be a 2nd huge business which roughly doubled Apple’s ‘size’. If you remember, we ported iTunes to Windows. We now addressed 100% of the world’s market with this integrated system and it began the era of Apple that we are now in. So why didn’t we port iTunes to Android? Did something get closed up? I love Apple products and iTunes and wish it were on my Android products too.”
Wozniak also commented on the numerous lawsuits that Apple has been involved in. “I wish that instead of all these lawsuits Apple was sitting down and cross-licensing with the other players. They have come up with some very good features without complicating the UI,” he said. “Things like palm swipe to take a screen snapshot. I would like my iPhone to be the best it could, even if someone else did some of the things first.”
When asked how Apple can survive without Steve Jobs, Woz replied: “We did go through a period of introducing a lot of key younger talent when Steve Jobs returned. One suggestion is that we look at doing that again.” Perhaps Simon Cowell will be able to help with that one.
“I believe that you can create the most innovative products even when they are open. But I could be wrong,” said Woz when asked about his opinion on closed versus open technology. “Open products tend to seem more complex. I suggest that maybe 80% of us or more are technophobes and scared to admit how little we know. I’m thinking of our mums and dads a lot in this thought. Apple is the safest haven for them not to get confused.”
“I have always given my support to the jailbreak community because they remind me of myself when I met Steve Jobs and how we were, then and for the years leading to Apple,” Woz said.
“As an Apple shareholder, what matters is not sales or market share. It’s profitability,” Woz explained. “Apple seems to stand alone in profit market-share. So the course they are taking is a good one. It’s hard to guess whether profits would be greater or lesser under hypothetical scenarios.”
When asked whether he would consider returning to Apple, Woz replied: “Apple is very complex. I like personal simplicity. I like to do what I’m good at, which is enjoying technology. I don’t honestly feel I could do better than anyone reading this at a role in Apple. Jobs had the drive to run things and influence things. If there was something for sure where I’d be a great help to Apple, I’d be there in an instant, as Apple is #1 in my heart.”
To read more of Woz’s answers, visit Slashdot’s Ask Steve Wozniak Anything page.