That’s what the New York Times figured out (after we called and pitched it to them, and teed up Phil Schiller to explain it all using colorful pictures and simple sentences). Gist is, we have become the platform that all the apps guys want to write for. We’re making it easy for them. We’re helping them make money, and we’re promoting the crap out of them in our advertising. Read on to learn how this happened.
So there’s the thing. All we’re doing is what the Borg did with Windows 95. That’s right. I studied what the Borg did with Windows 95, and I learned from them. Yes, it pains me to say that. But I did. I learned that to be successful you need to make thousands and thousands of other people successful. You need to leave some money on the table. I’ll be honest — this is not in my nature. But years of Zen study and lots of psychotherapy have enabled me, at long last, to control my impulses. Because the fact is, a lot of what I was doing was self-destructive. It was about hating myself. I swear, in the early days, I was trying, though maybe not consciously, to mess things up for myself and the people around me.
But I’ve changed. I really have. How? Well, one day Katie sat down and just told me — Steve, honey, f you want people to love you, first you need to learn to love yourself. Then she did the thing from “Good Will Hunting” and just started saying, “It’s not your fault. It’s not your fault.” Next thing you know I’m sobbing on her shoulder. And then I did the work. Wasn’t easy, but I did it. And guess what? These days, I like me. I really do. I love me. I love me a lot, in fact.
I love me so much, in fact, that I was able to let other people make money on my platform, knowing that ultimately this would mean that I make way more money than I would have otherwise. Does it bug me that fucking Gates figured this out first and so was able to screw me on the desktop? Yes. Does it bug me, even now, that I’m letting other people make money? Yes. It does. Look, I’m human. I’ve still got more work to do. But I’ve got it under control. I really do.
And in those dark moments where I start to feel bad about learning from Microsoft, you know what I tell myself? I tell myself that all the stuff I learned from Microsoft, Microsoft forgot. I mean look at them today, right?
Now that is fucking rich.