Amazon's Jeff Bezos has insisted that Microsoft should be included in any list of the current great tech innovators.
Bezos, referring to a statement by Google's Eric Schmidt that names Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon as the 'four horsemen' of tech, told Wired that Microsoft could not be excluded.
"Lists like that are fine and interesting, but if I were making that list I would have a hard time not having Microsoft on it," said Bezos.
"They've done a lot of innovative things, some of which get overshadowed by their big existing businesses.
"You look at something like Kinect, it's pretty cool."
Bezos' profile has never been higher, with the Amazon Kindle Fire US release this week representing a key moment for Amazon.
The low-cost tablet may well prove to be a major player in that part of the market, backed by Amazon's well established market of media.
Bezos points out that it's important to see how quickly technology moves on, pointing to the big guns of a decade ago.
"But one question to ask when you see a list like that is, who would have been on it 10 years ago?" added Bezos.
"That will keep you humble. Go back to 1980. Who would you have predicted to be among the four horsemen of the personal computer era?
"There are always shiny things. A company shouldn't get addicted to being shiny, because shiny doesn't last. You really want something that's much deeper-keeled.
"You want your customers to value your service. And there are companies that haven't gone through tough times, so they're not really tested."
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