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Apple Spurned Microsoft: Tech Edge

Stocks in this article: AAPL RIMM GOOG MSFT

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Something huge was missing from Steve Jobs' earnings call harangue: Microsoft (MSFT).

When Jobs upstaged Apple's (AAPL) record financial performance story Monday to share some thoughts that have been weighing on his mind, he failed to mention the "evil empire" of Redmond, Wash.

Steve Jobs

For several minutes Jobs tore into all the major demons out there that apparently threaten his company's greatness like the "avalanche" of 7-inch tablets, the stumbling BlackBerry shop Research In Motion (RIMM) and the fragmentation of Google's (GOOG) Android software.

Coming from the beloved Apple chief -- who called out competitors by name -- the words had a piercing sting. But perhaps none was more hurt than Microsoft.

Maybe it was out of spite, maybe it was a strange show of respect, but the real upshot was that Microsoft didn't make the cut as a key Apple rival.

How could Jobs not include his long-time nemesis in the club? Why didn't he see fit to toss a barb at Microsoft, so Steve Ballmer could join Android's Andy Rubin or RIM's Jim Balsillie with a nifty little reply?

Make no mistake. This is a cruel slight by Jobs.

Microsoft has to be reeling at this point. How could it not register in Jobs' mind? Didn't Microsoft just host a splashy New York debut party for its Window phone 7 software last week? The advertising campaign for Windows Phone 7 is expected to be $100 million, but that doesn't buy even a mention in Jobs' tirade?

Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg got a much bigger bang for his public relations buck when he pledged $100 million to the Newark, N.J. school system.

The first Microsoft Windows 7 phones hit the market next month, and somewhere in that vast marketing colossus, they have to be livid that there's no Jobs venom to endorse the effort.

--Written by Scott Moritz in New York.

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Editor's note: "Tech Edge" is a blog written and compiled by Scott Moritz, TheStreet's senior tech correspondent. The blog explores behind-the-scenes tech news, rumors and reports that Wall Street folks are talking about.

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