It's almost strange to see how partnerships can change the views of some people who would previously talk down about the competition – all the while exemplifying the views of their company. Steve Ballmer is no stranger to controversy as he exudes that kind of in your face attitude, but he did manage to raise some ears after words uttered from his mouth seemingly praised one of his long time competitors; Apple. There's no denying the kind of impact Apple has been able to accomplish with the App Store, but Steve Ballmer had some nice words about Apple's lavish success with their smartphone and App Store – he went on to say during a speech at the University of Washington's computer science building that “Apple's done a very nice job that allows people to monetize and commercialize their intellectual property.” It may seem like the potential partnership between Apple and Microsoft about bringing Bing search to the iPhone may clearly have a part in the change of heart stance that Ballmer recently exhibited. Although there is still no confirmation to this rumor, it does have some validity to it as both companies seem to have a common threat from Google. Android's onslaught may have some backing to this potential partnership between Apple and Microsoft – it's obvious that Google and Apple compete in a number of markets in the technology sector. This partnership may have what it takes to possibly slow down Google's relentless scale in the technology world – then again, competition in the market will always fuel partnerships to ensure a long lasting foundation.