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Ms. Gates: 'Bill does not use a Mac'

Zune child abuse continues

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Bill's better half, Melinda Gates, is no fan of Apple's magical and revolutionary tablet.

"Of course not," Ms. Gates told The New York Times when asked if she owned an iPad.

There's no love for Apple products at Chez Portes. When asked about the persistent urban myth that her hubby uses an Apple laptop, the co-chairwoman of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation replied "False," adding with a mildly convoluted understanding of architectural detail: "Nothing crosses the threshold of our doorstep."

Back in March 2009, she told Vogue: "There are very few things that are on the banned list in our household...But iPods and iPhones are two things we don't get for our kids."

Her anti-all-things-Cupertinian conviction continues. When the NYT asked her how she responds when young 'uns Jennifer, Rory, or Phoebe ask for an iPod, she told her interlocutor: "I have gotten that argument — 'You may have a Zune.'"

Melinda's old man, Bill, seems more conflicted about Apple than his missus. Late last year he had kind words for Steve Jobs, saying that The Wall Street Journal's person of the decade had "made Apple back into being an incredible force in doing good things."

That's nice. But love for Jobs' products? Not so much: "There's nothing on the iPad I look at and say, 'Oh, I wish Microsoft had done it,'" Gates told CBS shortly after the tablet was announced, but before its thunderously successful launch.

By the way, Gates' assessment of the iPad was eerily reminiscent of his verdict on the iPod, which he delivered to BusinessWeek in 2004: "There's nothing that the iPod does that I say, 'Oh, wow, I don't think we can do that.'"

That was two years before the release of Microsoft's supposed "iPod killer," the Zune — and we all know how well that went.

Today, the Zune and its kin (pardon the pun), are pretty much history — which means that Melinda Gates need not worry about waiting through production backlogs when foisting the doomed device on her sheltered progeny. ®

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