Tim Cook takes a swipe at rival smartphones during commencement speech

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Tim Cook's commencement address demonstrated again how deeply he understands Apple culture.
Tim Cook's commencement address demonstrated again how deeply he understands Apple culture.
Photo: George Washington University

Tim Cook welcomed students into the working world this weekend by giving the commencement address at George Washington University’s graduation ceremony.

Cook — who received an honorary doctorate as part of the ceremony — spoke about Apple’s status as a force for good in the world: something which has been a theme during his tenure as the company’s CEO. More importantly, he got in a great dig at the expense of Apple’s iPhone competitors.

Check out the video below.

“They’ve asked me to make a standard announcement about silencing your phones,” Cook told the audience. “So those of you with an iPhone, just place it in silent mode. If you don’t have an iPhone, please pass it to the centre aisle; Apple has a world-class recycling program.”

On a more serious note, Cook talked about Martin Luther King Jr., President Jimmy Carter, growing up in Alabama, and working alongside Steve Jobs.

Cook’s speech will, of course, be compared to Jobs’ legendary Stanford commencement address of almost exactly a decade ago. While it wasn’t as memorable as that one, however, it was certainly very strong, and once again evidence of just how well Cook understands Apple’s values and culture without having to pretend to be his predecessor.

Cook ended the speech by taking a photo of the crowd at George Washington University’s graduation ceremony using his iPhone 6 — describing it as “the best view in the world.”