Depending on which version of the conventional wisdom you choose to believe, Apple is engaged in a battle to the death with Google and Microsoft. With the former, it’s mostly about smartphones, although Google is also working on a desktop operating system. When it comes to the latter, it’s the eternal conflict between the Mac and the PC, although Steve Jobs admitted long ago that Microsoft won the operating system wars.
Adding to the impression that Apple and Google are at loggerheads is the fact that the latter’s CEO, Eric Schmidt, resigned from the former’s board last year because of existing and potential future conflicts. Certainly he’d have to recuse himself from any meeting involving mobile device strategy, operating system plans, and that wouldn’t leave much room for anything else.
With Microsoft, those famous Mac versus PC ads clearly identify one of Apple’s biggest enemies. Even though it’s highly unlikely the Mac OS will ever supplant Windows in our lifetime — at least not before both are replaced by something perhaps even now being devised in someone’s garage — Apple delights in poking fun at the failings of Windows.