Elon Musk Declares War on Apple

The dispute between the world’s richest man and the world’s biggest corporation spills into the open.

It was inevitable.

The rivalry between Elon Musk, the world’s most influential CEO, and Apple  (AAPL) – Get Free Report, the biggest company, was going to turn into an all-out fight between two brands that don’t want to share the throne of innovation. 

Musk, the richest man in the world, is a visionary who believes he has no rival and has still always been jealous of the cult of Apple. 

The iPhone maker enjoys its reputation as the most revolutionary company, and its iconic co-founder, Steve Jobs, remains one of the most respected innovators.

Musk and his Tesla  (TSLA) – Get Free Report and SpaceX believe they have done much more to transform the world in recent years than has Apple, which since the iPhone has only released the Apple Watch and possibly the iPad.

For a long time the rivals never turned to direct confrontation, preferring to confront each other indirectly. But when Musk became the owner of Twitter  (TWTR) – Get Free Report on Oct. 27, the confrontation became inevitable. 

That’s because Apple is an app distributor, and its content policy diverges with the approach of Musk, who regards himself as a “free-speech absolutist” even when it comes to hate speech.

‘Go to War’

Just a month after taking control of Twitter, Musk has declared war on Apple in a series of tweets portraying the Cupertino, Calif., tech group as an opponent of free speech, an enemy of Tesla, and the face of censorship in America.

He started by using a photomontage showing a car taking a highway exit at the last moment. The direction sign shows that by continuing straight the car would have paid 30%, but by leaving the highway the vehicle was going to war. 

Musk here refers to the fee that the maker of the iPad and the Apple Watch applies to in-app sales as well as in-app purchases.

“Did you know Apple puts a secret 30% tax on everything you buy through their App Store?” the billionaire asked in another tweet.

He then claimed, without providing evidence, that Apple had threatened to stop distributing the Twitter app by removing it from the App Store.

“Apple has also threatened to withhold Twitter from its App Store, but won’t tell us why,” Musk said.

A Twitter user then claimed that Apple was a big donor to the Democratic Party, which could justify the group’s move towards Musk, who has voted Republican since the midterm elections. Musk immediately deduces that Apple was not objective.

“Wow, they don’t sound biased at all!” the billionaire commented.

Apple didn’t respond to a request for comment.

Poll Against Apple

Without delay, he then organized — as he often does on important decisions — a poll to obtain the support of Twitter users in his vendetta against Apple. 

The poll proposal is: “Apple should publish all censorship actions it has taken that affect its customers.” Users have until Nov. 29 to vote. Two hours after the poll launched, more than a million people had voted. The choice is Yes or No.

When a user asked Musk if Twitter’s existence on the App Store was in jeopardy, the billionaire was unequivocal.

“Is Apple threatening Twitter’s presence in the App Store or otherwise making moderation demands?” the user asked.

“Yes,” Musk responded.

The Techno King then accused the group, led by CEO Tim Cook, of censorship and appealed to anyone who feels they are being censored by Apple.

“Who else has Apple censored?” Musk asked.

Another Twitter user asked him if he was really ready to take on Apple when many Tesla owners use the group’s operating system in their cars. Musk wondered whether Apple was going to hurt Tesla

“Is this really a fight we want to pick. An awful lot of your Tesla customers use iOS to access their cars.. if that app gets pulled, it’ll significantly impact your ability to sell to Apple customers. Cards are way less convenient than BT entry,” the user asked.

“Are you suggesting Apple would use its duopolist powers to hurt Tesla?” Musk replied.

To conclude, Musk has made Apple the face of censorship in America and poses as the leader of the revolution against the California tech giant.

“A revolution against online censorship in America,” he said, commenting on a meme showing Apple CEO Cook.

“If anyone can fight Apple with an actual chance of winning, it’s @elonmusk. He needs allies, though. Who will stand with him?” one Twitter user said.

To which Musk replied: “Support is greatly appreciated!”

“The Musk vs Apple new battle is not what investors want to see,” commented Wedbush analyst Dan Ives. “The Street wants less drama, not more as this Twitter situation remains the gift that keeps on giving for the Tesla bears with every day a new chapter.”

In October, Musk predicted that Tesla’s valuation would reach at least $4.5 trillion in the next few years. 

Apple is currently the world’s most valuable company, with a market value of $2.3 trillion at last check, according to companiesmarketcap.com. Saudi Aramco, which is benefiting from soaring oil prices, has a market value of $1.9 trillion. 

Between them, the two largest companies in the world are worth $4.2 trillion.

Currently, Tesla has a market capitalization of more than $569 billion. The manufacturer of electric vehicles had at one point passed the symbolic valuation threshold of $1 trillion.

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