High demand for Android-running devices definitely helps its creator add share at the expense of other software providers, Google’s chairman said yesterday in an interview with Bloomberg.
According to Gartner Inc, Google’s operating system snared 72 percent of the market in the third quarter, while its Cupertino-based rival had 14 percent. Schmidt said confirmed the data, adding that customers are activating more than 1.3 million Android devices a day.
“This is a huge platform change; this is of the scale of 20 years ago – Microsoft versus Apple,” he said. “We’re winning that war pretty clearly now.”
Schmidt’s comments obviously reflect the company’s growing confidence in its ability to attract users and advertisers as more and more customers prefer handheld devices to traditional computers.
By giving away Android, the searching giant cedes revenue to hardware partners, such as Samsung Electronics Co.
It looks like Google’s chairman is ready for that sacrifice as it raises demand for ads and other Internet- based services that benefit the company over time.
“The core strategy is to make a bigger pie,” he said. “We will end up with a not perfectly controlled and not perfectly managed bigger pie by virtue of open systems.”
In the interview the Schmidt also touched on different topics such as varied as taxes, the economy and Google’s growing roster of competitors.
Schmidt’s comments are predicted to inflame the row over the amount of tax multinationals pay, after it emerged that the company funnelled $9.8bn of revenues from international subsidiaries into Bermuda last year to halve its tax bill.
However, the Google’s chairman defended the company’s legitimate tax arrangements. “We pay lots of taxes; we pay them in the legally prescribed ways,” he said. “I am very proud of the structure that we set up. We did it based on the incentives that the governments offered us to operate.”
He went on, adding: “It’s called capitalism. We are proudly capitalistic. I’m not confused about this.”
British Vince Cable was not satisfied with Schmidt’s points of view. The Business Secretary told The reporters: “It may well be [capitalism] but it’s certainly not the job of governments to accommodate it.”
As The Telegraph writes, a Californian pressure group Consumer Watchdog demanded the Senate’s Finance Committee a hearing devoted to Google’s “global tax avoidance strategies”.
Consumer Watchdog’s director John Simpson wrote for the Committee in order to arrange a meeting for Schmidt and Google’s chief executive to “testify under oath and explain their company’s apparent abuse of the tax code to the detriment of all who play fairly.”
Simpson urged the Senate to work with “other countries’ tax authorities” to “put an end to egregious loopholes that allow cynical exploitation by this generation’s Robber Barons.”
“Governments in Europe, many of which have ben targets of Google’s morally bankrupt tax policies, are actively seeking redress,” he wrote.
“But this is not a problem that only impacts other countries’ revenues. Google’s tactics strike at the US Treasury as well, forcing the rest of us to make up for the Internet giant’s unwillingness to pay its fair share.”
He added: “What makes Google’s activities so reprehensible is its hypocritical assertion of its corporate motto, ‘Don’t Be Evil’.”