Bill Gates bans iPods

Most people who own a Microsoft product know about the rivalry between the company and iPod maker Apple, but few know the company’s former head bans Apple products from his own house.

“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,” Melinda Gates, Bill’s wife, said in a recent interview with Vogue.

Melinda is the co-founder of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the largest philanthropic organisation in the world, with assets to the tune of $US35 billion. But even now and then, she says, Apple products catch her eye.

“Every now and then I look at my friends and say, ‘Ooh, I wouldn’t mind having that iPhone’, ” she said.

Current Microsoft chief Steve Ballmer has also followed the Apple-ban trend, telling Fortune that “I’ve got my kids brainwashed: you don’t use Google, and you don’t use an iPod”.

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