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Microsoft, Nokia, Nintendo take shots at Apple's iPad debut

Unsurprisingly, Apple's introduction of its new multimedia, mobile computing, game playing iPad has been met with criticism from three of the company's biggest competitors: Microsoft, Nokia and Nintendo.

Nokia's issue came with Apple co-founder Steve Jobs' claim Wednesday that Apple is the largest mobile device company in the world. Nokia shot back with a post on its official blog disputing the statement.

Mark Squires, head of social media Nokia, said that Jobs' comments and media coverage of it made his blood pressure rise. Jobs specifically named Nokia, and alleged that Apple's $15.6 billion in revenue last quarter made it bigger than Samsung and Sony as well. Squires post entitled "A Fruit Confused?" was his attempt to "set the record straight."

Squires said that Nokia's devices and services business earned 8.18 billion euros from October to December 2009, while Apple took in 7.25 billion euros from its mobile products.

"The difference between the two companies is even larger if you use the more common measure: the number of devices sold," Squires wrote. "by that comparison, Nokia has been the largest mobile devices company in the world for a dozen consecutive years."

Nokia and Apple currently have a number of lawsuits directed at each other, making accusations of patent violations on both parties' behalves. As the iPhone has grown in popularity, Nokia has retained its status as the market leader, but has suffered significant losses at the hands of competitors.

Microsoft, too, joined the fray this week, when Brandon Watson, director of product management in the developer platform at Microsoft told Technologizer that he found it "humorous" that "Microsoft is much more open than Apple." Watson was referring to the fact that the newly-announced iPad runs the iPhone OS, which can only install third-party applications through the Apple-controlled App Store.

Finally, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata said he feels Apple didn't deliver any surprises when it revealed the iPad on Wednesday. The Japanese executive told The Associated Press that he felt Apple simply introduced "a bigger iPod touch." The report called him "totally unimpressed."

While the rivalry between Apple and Microsoft is well known, the mobile gaming platform battle between Apple and Nintendo is relatively new. Last year, Iwata said Nintendo could have a "dark future" ahead of it if the game company could not differentiate itself from Apple's iPhone.

In 2009, some of the biggest names in game publishing brought well-known franchises to the iPhone and iPod touch App Store. Franchises like The Sims, Metal Gear Solid and Grand Theft Auto have all found success on Apple's mobile platform.