Google’s Eric Schmidt: Relationship With Apple Has Improved

Google Chairman Eric Schmidt says his company’s notorious feud with Apple has lessened in 2013.

While attending the Allen and Company Sun Valley tech and media conference, Schmidt claimed that over the past year the too company’s have held “lots and lots” of meetings. Schmidt says those meetings also included other partners and focus “on a long list of issues.”

Schmidt is very familiar with Apple, having once served on the tech giant’s board of directors.

Perhaps the two tech giants are getting along better because they are doing less business with one another. Apple in late 2012 famously dropped direct integration with Google Maps for its iOS platform. Apple also announced during its most recent keynote that it will drop Google as its default Siri search engine and pivot instead towards Microsoft’s Bing platform.

Apple also dropped the default Google YouTube video player for iOS and replaced it with Vimeo.

While Apple has severed ties with Google in terms of default Google apps support on iOS devices, the Google apps still remain popular thanks to inclusion in the Apps Store.

The company’s may be less at odds now that Steve Jobs is no longer in control of Apple, Inc. During his last years at the company, Jobs claimed that Google ripped off the Apple iOS platform to create Android. Jobs had vowed to spend “every penny” Apple had to “right this wrong.” Jobs also claimed he was ready to go “thermonuclear” on Google, a sentiment Tim Cook has not appeared to share.

Apple and Google never went to full out war in the courts although Apple has won several small patent infringement lawsuits against Android.

While Apple and Google have drifted apart in terms of direct integration, they do still work together. The two companies have advertising and search contracts in place, and they both spend money on legal matters that affect the overall tech industry.

Schmidt in the meantime says Apple and Google are “in constant businesses discussions.” Leading Google’s part of those discussions is Chief Business Officer Nikesh Arora.

Do you think Google and Apple can repair their rocky relationship?