Was Steve Jobs ranting about Google and Android or simply defending iOS?

Hit play on the YouTube video (it’s just audio) and listen to Steve Jobs defend iOS’s ‘closed’ nature versus Google and Android’s ‘open’, and as he put it, fragmented approach. It’s quite characteristic of a company having a healthy fear of their competition. After all, it wasn’t that long ago that Apple was dominating the sleek, sexy smartphone market, while Android was merely talk and slideshows.

But today, Android is chalking up major wins because of its ‘open’ nature that has it working on numerous devices from many handset makers and even more crucially on many different carriers. Notice how Jobs failed to mention that little point. He also questions the numbers (of Android handsets sold), when a more astute observation would be how quickly Android adoption is occurring. But I’m sure he knows that fully well and this is just part of his dilemma.

Of course, although other journalists have characterized this as a rant, it’s perfectly normal that Mr. Jobs defend and promote his company’s position on a shareholder and investors’ call in a positive light and downplay – or tear into – a competitor’s potential. He didn’t sound quite as hysterical or over-the-top as some other headlines would have me believe. Oh incidentally, this happened at the same time that Apple was marking their recent record $20 billion quarter.

As a consumer, I’m glad that Android is around to keep Apple on its toes. As a geek, I’m also glad to have an Android-type OS that I can muck with and customize to my heart’s content, not to mention being able to choose from more than one piece of hardware. Let Mr. Jobs speak away; it’s his right and harms Google/Android little.