Engadget got the chance to sit down with Jonathan Schwartz, the pony-tailed CEO of Sun Microsystems. Being the gadget blog that they are, Engadget asked Schwartz about the long-missing JavaFX Mobile platform Sun has promised, Java on the iPhone, and competing with Microsoft as an open source vendor.
Jonathan Schwartz, the one quarter (Asian) Indian, one quarter Welsh (on his mother’s side), one quarter Hungarian, and one quarter Russian (on his father’s side) CEO of Sun, gained his position as CEO in 2006, replacing Scot McNealy. Schwarz was one of the first (and probably, still the only) high-profile technology CEO who blogs fairly regularly, an activity promoted within the company.
Engagdet believes that Sun is more into the ‘democratisation’ of mobile platforms, while the industry is actually moving towards more controlled, ‘end-to-end user experience’ platforms, such as the iPhone. Schwartz explained:
By definition free is a more accessible price than six hundred dollars. A beautiful six hundred dollar phone will almost by definition ship in lower volume than a slightly uglier but functional text phone for no dollars. I think if you look at the proliferation of gadgets in the world, the proliferation of devices, the world is filled with way way more simple phones than they are WiFi enabled devices that allow you to look at maps.
However, Schwartz stated that Sun is still working hard on porting Java to the iPhone. There are no technical roadblocks, but he did add that Apple’s SDK licensing agreement could cause problems. “But again, you know, it’s a big market, there’s lots of opportunity, so we’ll see.”
When asked if Sun would join one of the 3853 Linux mobile phone consortiums, Schwartz replied, “You know, consortiums don’t produce phones.” Take that.