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Starting off on a tangent, Windows is also proprietary. (MS just licensed off used of Windows)

Going back to the subject, before Steve came back Apple tried the MS game where they licensed everything about the Mac (from hardware to software). This strategy failed miserably; most likely because they were already too late.

Fast forwarding to today, Steve is not the problem. He is the main reason Apple is wildly successful today. If he didn't return and revive Apple with the products under his watch, Apple would most likely be gone. Saying Apple is not successful is like saying BMW isn't successful just because it doesn't sell as many cars as either Ford or GM.

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