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Google and Microsoft compete for iPhone love

In a pair of reports yesterday, Reuters noted that rumors of Apple dumping Google in favor of Microsoft’s Bing for the iPhone’s search functionality have hung in the air at this week’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. According to the first report, Google vice president Vic Gundotra called the Apple-Google relationship “stable” and noted that Google has “no reason to believe that’s going to change”.

“Apple is a very close and valuable partner and we’re very excited about the relationship we have with them today. We have no reason to believe that’s going to change,” Vic Gundotra, who leads Google’s mobile engineering, told journalists on Monday.

“We don’t want to comment on those rumours,” he said when pressed on the issue of the iPhone at a roundtable at industry trade fair Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. “We think that relationship is stable.”
A second report from Reuters described Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer’s reaction upon being asked about the prospects of a deal to bring Bing to the iPhone.

When asked about the reports, Ballmer said “I wouldn’t comment either way,” but smiled, and repeated the phrase when the reporter remarked that Ballmer looked happy.
Apple’s deal with Google to provide default search for the iPhone has been pegged at a value of over $100 million per year for Apple as it participates in revenue sharing with Google through the platform.

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