“That is a very complimentary thing to say,” he responds humbly, “but it’s not how I think about it — that way. I think we have our own approaches and vision. Nobody would ever be the next Steve Jobs. He was a unique guy, and, you know it would be…” His voice trails off as he searches for the right words. Then he says, “That’s not how I think about it. But it’s often meant as a compliment and I certainly receive it that way. I’m very grateful to that kind of question but that’s not how I think about it.”
We’re sitting in a conference room in Amazon’s offices in Seattle and the real topic of conversation isn’t Apple or Steve Jobs but Amazon’s new Kindle tablets, which Bezos has been briefing us on — or really demoing some of their key new features. But I couldn’t help asking “Jeff,” as he’s referred to at Amazon, whether he was the next Steve, because it seemed like something you should ask if you only had a few minutes with Jeff Bezos.