Apple fans have a new salvo to fire at their Windows-loving brethren, as a Microsoft exec has revealed that the Windows 7 operating system enjoyed some fruit-flavoured inspiration.

Microsoft's partner group manager, Simon Aldous, has told PCR-Online, in a candid interview, that Microsoft deliberately tried to "create a Mac look and feel" with the new OS.

The quote from Aldous, who we hope still has a job as we write this, goes as follows:

"One of the things that people say an awful lot about the Apple Mac is that the OS is fantastic, that it's very graphical and easy to use. What we've tried to do with Windows 7 - whether it's traditional format or in a touch format - is create a Mac look and feel in terms of graphics.

Aldous does then pull it back with a bit of pro-Windows spin: "We've significantly improved the graphical user interface, but it's built on that very stable core Vista technology, which is far more stable than the current Mac platform, for instance".

When asked if Microsoft has "taken the style of the Mac platform and built it on the more solid foundations of Vista", Aldous said: "We've also tried to listen to what customers want in terms of a much slicker user interface and the ability to engage with it far more intuitively. That's the product that we're delivering".

UPDATE: This has been debunked in a Microsoft blog post. Brandon LeBlanc says: "I hate to say this about one of our own, but his comments were inaccurate and uninformed", before pointing readers in the direction of other online articles that look at the design of the OS.