Wozniak says Apple needs to keep setting the standard

Apple co-founder Steve “Woz” Wozniak has never been afraid to say what he thinks about the technology world and even the company he helped build.

In a recent an interview with Bloomberg, Wozniak confirmed that Apple has kept its ability to determine the course of consumer electronics – even though it’s facing more competition in the mobile phone and tablet market than ever before.

Indeed, Wozniak said that while companies like Amazon.com and Google all have great ideas, sometimes the industry needs a critical mass of loyal users that will instantly buy or seek out a particular direction.

“Apple is really good at setting a standard with a new device,” the Woz opined. “Apple still has its halo in that regard.”

After Jobs’ untimely death in 2011, the CEO position was taken over by Tim Cook who has been under significant pressure to deliver revolutionary new devices and help Apple keep its cool factor and edge over the competition.

Wozniak believes that Apple should consider opening its ecosystem to allow buyers of mobile devices on competing operating systems such as Android or Windows Phone to use the iTunes media software.

According to the Woz, without special features for its devices that outclass rivals Apple will have to rely more and more on its appeal as a premium brand.

“We used to have these ads, I’m a Mac and I’m a PC, and the Mac was always the cool guy,” he said. “And ouch, it’s painful, because we kind of are losing that.”

When asked about the rumored Apple watch, Wozniak noted that he has been wearing iPod nano on its wrist for the past few years and would welcome an official Cupertino-branded device.

“Apple can keep engineers working so intently toward the right product, you don’t have to rush something out ahead of time,” he added.