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Thursday, April 05, 2012, 08:10 am PT (11:10 am ET)

Biographer says Steve Jobs was legitimately infuriated by Android

Biographer Walter Isaacson has disputed Google CEO Larry Page's assertion that Steve Jobs only said disparaging remarks about its Android mobile operating system to rally his own employees.

Page's comments came from an interview this week in which he said he believed Jobs's hatred of Android was merely "for show." The Google CEO suggested that the comments from Jobs served the best interests of Apple in giving its employees something to fight against.

Those comments were in contrast to what Jobs told Isaacson for his biography of the Apple co-founder. In their conversations, Jobs called Android a "stolen product," and vowed to use his "last dying breath" to "destroy" it.

After hearing Page's interpretation of Jobs's words, Isaacson spoke out this week in a speech at the Royal institution of Great Britain. Isaacson said he felt that Android had ripped off many of his ideas found in the iPhone and iPad, and that his ire was very real, according to Macworld.

"It's almost copied verbatim by Android," Isaacson said. "And they license it around promiscuously. And then Android starts surpassing Apple in market share, and this totally infuriated him. It wasn't a matter of money. He said, 'You can't pay me off, I'm here to destroy you.'"

The biographer also predicted that current Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook will use a different approach than Jobs, who vowed to "go thermonuclear war" to stop Android. Isaacson instead believes that Cook will eventually settle Apple's Android-related lawsuits.

Steve Jobs biography


A similar take was offered in a recent cover story by Bloomberg Businessweek, which revealed that Apple has communicated recently with Samsung about potentially settling the multitude of lawsuits between the two companies. Author Paul M. Barrett said Cook doesn't share Jobs's desire to "(lay) all foes to waste," and that he instead views the courtroom as a "necessary evil."

Apple has not sued Google directly over Android, but has taken on a number of Google's partners who ship devices running the Android mobile operating system. In addition to Samsung, other companies involved in litigation are HTC and and Motorola Mobility, the latter of which is owned by Google.