In an age with a frenzy of Government antitrust departments going after successful businessines like: Alphabet (Google), Amazon and Facebook, Bill Gates commented in a recent interview that he thinks that Windows would have been dominant in the mobile phone category if not for the DOJ antitrust suit against Microsoft.
“There’s no doubt the antitrust lawsuit was bad for Microsoft, and we would have been more focused on creating the phone operating system, and so instead of using Android today, you would be using Windows Mobile if it hadn’t been for the antitrust case” […] “Oh, we were so close….I was just too distracted. I screwed that up because of the distraction.” He said the company was three months too late with a release Motorola would have used on a phone….Now nobody here has ever heard of Windows Mobile. But oh, well. That’s a few hundred billion here or there…” [Bill Gates: People would use Windows Mobile if not for antitrust case]
This is a damning indictment of how government policy determines winners and losers in the marketplace.
(It would be an interesting investigation to see how many government officials and their cronies have profited over Microsoft losing the Mobile category to Google and Apple.)
Even worse, reports the article:
Gates also said he would not have retired as soon had it not been for the U.S. government case, which began in 1998. Gates started the company with Paul Allen in 1975, then stepped aside as CEO in 2000, letting Steve Ballmer take the reins as the antitrust case was at its peak.
From the archives:
- The Department of Justice’s Assault on Microsoft: Who is the Predator and Who is the Victim? by Mark Da Cunha
- Persecution of Microsoft is Immoral by Richard Salsman
- Microsoft’s Real Sin: Sanction of the Victim by Richard Salsman