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Microsoft and Apple Share a Peaceful Moment

By Jeff Kagan
Dec 10, 2015 9:41 AM PT

Can you imagine Microsoft and Apple actually liking each other? Who'da thunk such a thing was even possible? However, the holiday spirit is alive and well at Microsoft. The company flew a bunch of workers from around the country into New York City for something very special.

Microsoft and Apple Share a Peaceful Moment

Microsoft workers and a local NYC children's youth choir met at Microsoft's new Fifth Avenue store to spread some special holiday cheer. Their goal was to share a message of peace and harmony with Microsoft's neighbor down the street... Apple.

The Microsoft employees and the youth choir broke into song as they walked from their Fifth Avenue location to the iconic Apple store near Central Park -- you know, that big, clear, square block with the giant Apple logo on the side.

What happened next was very inspiring. The carolers brought the Apple workers out of the store, and they all enjoyed a touching moment with many other New Yorkers watching, but not believing what they were seeing.

Could this be the beginning of a new era of peace and prosperity between these two tech giants? Perhaps. If nothing else, this is a great first step. Microsoft is saying "let there be peace." Not bad.

We don't yet know how Apple will respond, but I would expect to see chapter two coming soon.

Reagan and Gorbachev

Not so long ago, Russia was the big, bad enemy of the U.S. President Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev really shook things up, though. They became friendly, and the resistance softened. Reagan's policy of "trust, but verify" was necessary, due to the longstanding feud.

Things were quite nice for a while. After a few decades, though, the walls went back up, and we are now back to where we started.

New Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella must have given the go-ahead for the New York City gesture. That is a good sign. He seems to have a fresh new understanding of the marketplace and his role at this time in history. He seems to understand that people use many different devices, often from competing brands -- yet they want them all to work well together.

So the question is, can Nadella soften the heart of Apple CEO Tim Cook? That's the big question. Let's hope so. These are two new leaders in a new chapter. New thinking should be welcomed by all right now.

We Can Hope for Peace

Perhaps we can enter a new age. Perhaps Microsoft and Apple actually can become less combative. Sure, they will have to live in a world of "trust, but verify" for a long while. However, wouldn't it be a better world if everyone could sit down and have a cup of coffee together once in a while?

Will this appeal for peace go beyond a gesture? Who knows? However, one thing we can enjoy today is how the holiday spirit really seems to be changing things on the tech battlefield. Let's hope it continues to spread.


E-Commerce Times columnist Jeff Kagan is a wireless analyst, telecom analyst, industry analyst, consultant and speaker who has been sharing his colorful perspectives on the changing industry for 25 years. Email him at jeff@jeffKAGAN.com.


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