Netscape = Apple??

I Find Karma (
Thu, 29 Aug 96 22:44:57 PDT

[When they say "we can't wait" below, is the "we" referring to Wired?]

It's been apparent over the past year
that Netscape was perhaps the first
software company since the dawn of the
MS era to figure out one of the two big
secrets of Microsoft's success: How to
act when you're on top. In Netscape's
case, that meant following Microsoft's
time-honored practices of agenda control
through standard control, shameless
promotion of your own products, and
belittling the competition's products
whenever they're announced. Netscape did
it so well, in fact, that everyone
thought they had won - and indeed,
judging from our browser stats, they
still have a hefty lead in the race. But
it's becoming increasingly clear to us
that they haven't yet figured out Number
Two in Microsoft's Secrets to Success:
How to act when you're behind. But with
Microsoft set to roar past them, what
have the minions of Mountain View done?
They've started to act and sound like

It's not that there's anything
particularly wrong - in isolation - with
Netscape's whiny complaints about
antitrust violations, or its obsessive
demonization of Microsoft as the enemy
(complete with banners hanging in the
office that exhort the troops to battle
the Beast), or Netscape marketing guru
Mike Homer's aping of Guy Kawasaki's
most excessive rants. But when we see
all three together, we have to wonder
when Middlefield Road in Mountain View
started to look like the Infinite Loop
in Cupertino. From our vantage point,
there's a reason that's now a road less

Speaking of the Infinite Loop, some of
our friends who have traveled it are
more than a little suspicious about how
often it has been trodden recently by
the newer, friendlier faces of
Microsoft. Something doesn't quite ring
true to these friends about the moves
made by Microsoft to support the Mac
software market. Given the more frequent
appearances of Microsoft employees in
the halls of Apple, and the pilgrimages
to Redmond by Gil Amelio, our friends
suggest there may be something else up
entirely. The word "sale" is being
bandied about more than the word
"acquisition" by observers, which
suggests that Gil may be seeking to
offload a product group or two in order
to raise some quick cash and streamline
the business. Did someone say QuickTime?
We can't recall. But it's also possible
that with Anne Bingaman gone, the Mac OS
itself could be on the table. We're not
so bullish about the latter possibility,
but we're certain that our friends at
Apple and Microsoft will soon reveal the
truth to us. We can't wait!

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