There has been many articles in the Business News about Google and Apple competing in more and more ways. Well the answer is yes and no. Apple creates products for people. Gadgets and computers and phones. From these gadgets they make money selling software and digital products such as apps, music, etc.
Google is a Media/Advertising Business. They create applications that enable them to make money from Brands seeking to advertise. They have their own Digital Ad Server Business and their search engine is specifically for Advertising revenue.
So in reality Google is closer to a WPP, Omnicon, New York Times or Yahoo than they are to an Apple or Sony.
Recently Eric Schmidt has mentioned the reason for Android is so that Google will eventually be able to serve ads to your phone using behavioral targeting. Google also created the Chrome browser. Why? Because Firefox has Ad Blocking Software so it impacts Google’s revenues (not for search BTW). And while Chrome might be promoted to ‘improve’ your browsing experience, it ensures all Ads Served reach your browser.
Now they are working on Chrome O/S which I am sure will be tightly tied to help behavioral target and serve even more Ads to your desktop or Laptop.
Apple makes their money selling products. Google makes their money selling Advertising. So technically in my view they do not compete.