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Microsoft plans wireless iPod rival by Christmas

post #1 of 108
Thread Starter 
Microsoft will start selling a wireless digital music and video player to compete with Apple Computer's iPod by Christmas, Reuters is reporting.

Sources close to the matter told the news organization that Microsoft has been touting the device to record companies in the last few weeks.

The new player will reportedly let users download music and videos over the air, a feature that could give it an edge over the iPod.

Microsoft has also been showing a software package similar to iTunes.

According to the report, the Redmond, Wash.-based software giant plans to build a digital ecosystem similar to Apple's iPod + iTunes model, in which it controls all the technology.

Sources told Reuters that record companies should begin receiving prototypes to test in the coming weeks and that Microsoft plans to throw "significant marketing dollars behind the launch."

In a report last month, Reuters cited sources in saying Microsoft was laying the groundwork to compete against Apple's iPod digital music players and iTunes service with "an entertainment device that plays videos and music."
post #2 of 108
iPod rival makes a lot more sense than iPod killler.
Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of a rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of a rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #3 of 108
I really hope this thing with Microsoft is a huge flop. Apple is one of the few companies that doesn't need competition to stay innovative.

I must admit, I am a bit worried about the whole thing. Maybe I shouldn't be? Microsoft just has way too much money to throw around and I'm afraid too many people will buy into the huge marketing effort Microsoft is sure to put forth.

I hope Apple has some great stuff in the works for the 6th gens...
post #4 of 108
Microsoft today pre-announced the coming soon, soon to be released in beta, iPod killer, iVista.

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post #5 of 108
Quote:
Originally posted by ashnazg
I really hope this thing with Microsoft is a huge flop. Apple is one of the few companies that doesn't need competition to stay innovative.

I must admit, I am a bit worried about the whole thing. Maybe I shouldn't be? Microsoft just has way too much money to throw around and I'm afraid too many people will buy into the huge marketing effort Microsoft is sure to put forth.

I hope Apple has some great stuff in the works for the 6th gens...


If the big guns are out now, Apple will simply move faster.

From the article:
"Sony had a similar approach. They owned content, devices, software and an online store and it hasn't enjoyed nearly the success Apple has," he said. "It's also about how you execute the plan."

Well, then... we've got nothing to worry about...

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

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post #6 of 108
They'll get this out by Christmas, but Vista won't be ready till the New Year?

If this is true, I look at the bright side in that Apple will have a competitor for music, but it seems that its competitor for operating systems has signaled its last hurrah on that front.

Windows is dead. Long live Windows.
post #7 of 108
Quote:
Originally posted by ashnazg
Apple is one of the few companies that doesn't need competition to stay innovative.

Wrong.
post #8 of 108
Buying music right to your player? Sounds GREAT!

Except...

* There goes your battery life

* And/or the thing gets bulkier and heavier for battery and antenna

* You probably have to pay something for the communications service involved (rather than just using your home ISP)

* You can't browse and sort results, with album art, columns of details, etc., on a tiny screen as well as you can on a computer's large screen

* You can't enter artist/title names to shop for on a handheld device as easily as you can with a real keyboard

* You can't manage and edit and organize your collection as well on a handheld device as you can with a mouse--unless you have a stylus adding bulk and ready to be lost (but no matter how bulky, the screen will still be smaller than iTunes on a computer)

* Your new music is now arriving in two places (assuming you still buy CDs or use download services)--rather than the simplicity of always sending new music directly to your computer which is your master library

* What about burning CDs?

* More complexity is not always a good addition to your music experience

* Would the quality be reduced, or would the arrival of the file just be slow?

* Is having to worry about finding a signal and signal strength and interruptions a good thing for shopping?

* You still have to plug in to charge anyway, which takes longer than synching your latest downloads

* Can't you wait until you get home? Is this really a "problem" consumers want solved?

* It still won't have Apple ease-of-use (or style or mindshare)

* Nearly every time poor Microsoft gets press exposure for it, the iPod and iTunes will be mentioned too--free mindshare for the competitor, and often in the tone of Microsoft copying Apple and playing catch-up (not the best kind or PR in the Vista vs. Leopard age)

* It will either be designed separately from the software and service (which puts it at a disadvantage compared to the well-integrated iPod + iTunes) or else it will be competing with services from Microsoft's allies

* The hardware will be competing with Microsoft's allies regardless.

* If you have to have DRM, I'd rather mine didn't come from Microsoft.

* It probably won't run on Mac, yet Microsoft will talk about "choice."

Otherwise, it sounds great

Even if Apple came out with such a service/device, many of the same problems would still apply.

But we don't know what will really be released: something else--like streaming satellite radio--I can see having its place. Still too bulky for me, but a streaming digital music subscription would have its uses. Maybe Microsoft is creating Sirius or FM with more choice? (Or with less?)
post #9 of 108
always one step behind waiting for an idea.
Go Microsoft!
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post #10 of 108
As far as I know, no one has seen how their "system" works, so although nagromme makes an excellent bunch of points, these points assume a lot about the way "wireless" works in Microsoft's configuration.

Since MS can't keep a secret, we'll all know soon enough what it means to Apple.

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post #11 of 108
Quote:
Originally posted by ashnazg
Apple is one of the few companies that doesn't need competition to stay innovative.

Right.
post #12 of 108
Quote:
Originally posted by nagromme
Buying music right to your player? Sounds GREAT!

Except...

* There goes your battery life

* And/or the thing gets bulkier and heavier for battery and antenna

* You probably have to pay something for the communications service involved (rather than just using your home ISP)

* You can't browse and sort results, with album art, columns of details, etc., on a tiny screen as well as you can on a computer's large screen

* You can't enter artist/title names to shop for on a handheld device as easily as you can with a real keyboard

* You can't manage and edit and organize your collection as well on a handheld device as you can with a mouse--unless you have a stylus adding bulk and ready to be lost (but no matter how bulky, the screen will still be smaller than iTunes on a computer)

* Your new music is now arriving in two places (assuming you still buy CDs or use download services)--rather than the simplicity of always sending new music directly to your computer which is your master library

* What about burning CDs?

* More complexity is not always a good addition to your music experience

* Would the quality be reduced, or would the arrival of the file just be slow?

* Is having to worry about finding a signal and signal strength and interruptions a good thing for shopping?

* You still have to plug in to charge anyway, which takes longer than synching your latest downloads

* Can't you wait until you get home? Is this really a "problem" consumers want solved?

* It still won't have Apple ease-of-use (or style or mindshare)

* Nearly every time poor Microsoft gets press exposure for it, the iPod and iTunes will be mentioned too--free mindshare for the competitor, and often in the tone of Microsoft copying Apple and playing catch-up (not the best kind or PR in the Vista vs. Leopard age)

* It will either be designed separately from the software and service (which puts it at a disadvantage compared to the well-integrated iPod + iTunes) or else it will be competing with services from Microsoft's allies

* The hardware will be competing with Microsoft's allies regardless.

* If you have to have DRM, I'd rather mine didn't come from Microsoft.

* It probably won't run on Mac, yet Microsoft will talk about "choice."

Otherwise, it sounds great

Even if Apple came out with such a service/device, many of the same problems would still apply.

But we don't know what will really be released... : something else--like streaming satellite radio--I can see having its place. Still too bulky for me, but a streaming digital music subscription would have its uses. Maybe Microsoft is creating Sirius or FM with more choice? (Or with less?)

But we don't know what will really be released...

Yet somehow you managed to go on and on, pointing out hypothetical flaws in a product none of us know anything about.
post #13 of 108
so how do you charge it?
post #14 of 108
several members some months ago suggested a BT wifi ipod with full screen and touch controls i think apple already has plans for this since they know they must keep up the pressure and keep their customer base. there is a huge install base that won't work with MS sooooooo why have two devices and plans. hmmmm maybe it will only really compete with non apple players including sony ....so we are looking again at two worlds the MS and Apple world. people are embracing apple.

here is my question if it's wireless including wifi then what about virus protection. if it's any part of IE or windows there are already bunch of virus's that will also run on this MS unit.

it just reinforces why i minimize my MS exposure.....worms, virus, attacks it also goes with their smartphones as well.

it won't grow unless they can address the real world, simple consumer issues.

as soon as it's out it will have a music virus attack8)

i know everyone wants an iphone but if apple has an ipod with wifi and bt, it could have a skype like product built in or part of .mac. hmmmm i think i will have a wonderful Christmas


hey will it play in france???
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post #15 of 108
ok, so i looked at the title of this article...and i was like oh (#*@$$@&_) but, then i read THIS-


Quote:
Originally posted by nagromme
Buying music right to your player? Sounds GREAT!

Except...

* There goes your battery life

* And/or the thing gets bulkier and heavier for battery and antenna

* You probably have to pay something for the communications service involved (rather than just using your home ISP)

* You can't browse and sort results, with album art, columns of details, etc., on a tiny screen as well as you can on a computer's large screen

* You can't enter artist/title names to shop for on a handheld device as easily as you can with a real keyboard

* You can't manage and edit and organize your collection as well on a handheld device as you can with a mouse--unless you have a stylus adding bulk and ready to be lost (but no matter how bulky, the screen will still be smaller than iTunes on a computer)

* Your new music is now arriving in two places (assuming you still buy CDs or use download services)--rather than the simplicity of always sending new music directly to your computer which is your master library

* What about burning CDs?

* More complexity is not always a good addition to your music experience

* Would the quality be reduced, or would the arrival of the file just be slow?

* Is having to worry about finding a signal and signal strength and interruptions a good thing for shopping?

* You still have to plug in to charge anyway, which takes longer than synching your latest downloads

* Can't you wait until you get home? Is this really a "problem" consumers want solved?

* It still won't have Apple ease-of-use (or style or mindshare)

* Nearly every time poor Microsoft gets press exposure for it, the iPod and iTunes will be mentioned too--free mindshare for the competitor, and often in the tone of Microsoft copying Apple and playing catch-up (not the best kind or PR in the Vista vs. Leopard age)

* It will either be designed separately from the software and service (which puts it at a disadvantage compared to the well-integrated iPod + iTunes) or else it will be competing with services from Microsoft's allies

* The hardware will be competing with Microsoft's allies regardless.

* If you have to have DRM, I'd rather mine didn't come from Microsoft.

* It probably won't run on Mac, yet Microsoft will talk about "choice."

Otherwise, it sounds great

Even if Apple came out with such a service/device, many of the same problems would still apply.

But we don't know what will really be released: something else--like streaming satellite radio--I can see having its place. Still too bulky for me, but a streaming digital music subscription would have its uses. Maybe Microsoft is creating Sirius or FM with more choice? (Or with less?)


considering that is all true, i think it will be like verizon's songs-on-your-phone service (you know, where you can download full songs via whatever network it is?) that never really caught on, so if microsoft had a wireless download service, throw that out the window. and seriously, knowing apple, they'll beat anything microsoft can throw at them =]
MAC POWER!
post #16 of 108
MS should just make their own "do everything" WINCE device that focuses on being a music player at a price-point that it attractive to consumers.

Unfortunately, consumers like the WINCE stuff, and a well-integrated music player with an iTunes compliment would be good for the market.

Hopefully it would also put enough pressure on Apple to come out with the iNewton...

We'll see. Christams season for Microsoft is March, right?
post #17 of 108
Vaporware.
MBP 1.83 100GB @ 5400rpm, 1GB RAM
iPod Nano 2GB
iPod 4G 20GB w/ Remote + Griffin iTalk
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MBP 1.83 100GB @ 5400rpm, 1GB RAM
iPod Nano 2GB
iPod 4G 20GB w/ Remote + Griffin iTalk
Dell S**tbox - Paperweight
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post #18 of 108
Microsoft's response to the iPod .....

OrigamiMusic

2 months later, news agencies report on Microsoft's newest, "worst flop ever!!"
post #19 of 108
Nice post, Nagromme !
post #20 of 108
The mPod (or some such spectacularly unoriginal name) will probably "phone home" several times a day and tell MicroShaft how many songs of questionable origin are loaded on the device and forwards your GPS coordinates to the RIAA and the local authorities. GULP!
post #21 of 108
MS Laser Wifi wPod Pro 2007 Media Center Edition.
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post #22 of 108
you guys crack me up!
go with the flow
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go with the flow
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post #23 of 108
Quote:
Originally posted by Chucker
Wrong.

Right! I mean you're right. They do need competition. Look at how slow they've gotten this year.
post #24 of 108
Quote:
Originally posted by nathan22t
Right.

Wrong. Everyone needs competition.
post #25 of 108
Quote:
Originally posted by akhomerun
so how do you charge it?

Er, plug it into the USB connector?
post #26 of 108
Quote:
Originally posted by melgross
Right! I mean you're right. They do need competition. Look at how slow they've gotten this year.

Exactly. I don't want Apple to show signs of overconfidence, let alone arrogance. Healthy competition is always good; Apple is not exempt from that rule.
post #27 of 108
The article says by Christmas, but which Christmas. We know what Microsoft are like for being over optimistic about release dates.

What about product testing doesn't sound like much time available for that.

4/5 Months to create an iTMS rival of the same quality and content plus engineer a WiFi device probably using WIN CE that looks as good as an ipod and doesn't breach any Apple patents.

Marketing, distribution, high volume production to meet demand..whats the present stage..they have a prototype that they have been "touting to record companies"

Sorry if this thing gets on the market by Christmas its going to be a dogs dinner.

What ever they bring to market Apple can do it better, with more style and flair.
post #28 of 108
Is there much point in anyone trying to compete with the iPod as a music player given that the chances are the iPod will soon evolve in to a combined music player & mobile phone? The battle for market share is then with Moto, Nokia etc.
post #29 of 108
If MS can compete with the Playstation, it will also be able to compete with the iPod, given enough time and money poured into it. I think MS really hate to see the success of Apple in the portable music/digital applicance area.

One major difference between the failed Sony ecosystem and Microsoft is the already existing OS ecosystem called Windows. And, I should add, one much bigger and more far-reaching than the one Apple had when they introduced the iPod.

I also disagree that Apple has been innovative with the iPod. The first iPod wasn't that unique, only really adding the HD to the mp3 player. The iTunes+iTMS+iPod ecosystem WAS innovative and grew even stronger with the availability of tons of accessories. I would dare to say that the iPod has been very slow in the innovative department, when compared to what exists on the market today.

Apple has been milking the iPod heavily the last few years and they need some serious competition!
post #30 of 108
Folks, the iPod IS Apple at this point. This could be bad. I bet the stock is going to take a beating today, in the face. Which is good, because I'll buy because I have The Faith. Apple better stop being STUPID and integrate goddamn PDA functionality and/or (same model? separate model?) phone functionality in to iPods, along with a widescreen and better input. And a mic. Or there will be trouble in paradise.
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post #31 of 108
Quote:
Originally posted by Chucker
I don't want Apple to show signs of overconfidence, let alone arrogance.

Do you know anything about Apple? For goodness sake, Apple has been overconfident and arrogant since the time of the Apple II! New competition will not take that away from them. And I would hope it doesn't. For it is that same arrogant attitude which has separated Apple from everyone else.
post #32 of 108
Another problem with the download right to your DAP model is the cost. Anyone tried to download a song to their cell phone. I tried it one day and it cost nearly $7.00CDN. NO THANKS.
post #33 of 108
Quote:
Originally posted by Token
I would dare to say that the iPod has been very slow in the innovative department, when compared to what exists on the market today.

IMHO, that is one of the iPod's strengths. It's not bogged down with features, and buttons to control them, and lots of menus and sub-menus to configure them. It does a few things and does them easily, with style, and quality.

It will be very interesting to see how this whole Nike pedometer thing works out. That's a pretty innovative accesory and points in the direction of the iPod becoming a mobile accesory hub of sorts - GPS, heart monitor, mass photo storage, who knows what Apple has cooking in their labs.

I'm a firm believer that Apple has all kinds of crazy feature laden iPod-like devices in their labs, but they dole out the features as they feel the market/consumers are ready for them.

- Jasen.
post #34 of 108
M$ is unfortunately 4 years late to the dance.

2 friends of mine who both owned DELL MP3 players recently switched to iPods.
I had been telling them for years why the iPod was better.
They are both Windows users and now they love Apple.

So many people have had horrible experiences using the Windows Media based MP3 players and have subsequently switched to Apple.
I think M$ is going to have a very tough sell.

I also agree that it sounds like Verizon's Vcast service which is dead in the water.
post #35 of 108
Quote:
Originally posted by Johnny Mozzarella
M$ is unfortunately 4 years late to the dance.

2 friends of mine who both owned DELL MP3 players recently switched to iPods.
I had been telling them for years why the iPod was better.
They are both Windows users and now they love Apple.

So many people have had horrible experiences using the Windows Media based MP3 players and have subsequently switched to Apple.
I think M$ is going to have a very tough sell.

I also agree that it sounds like Verizon's Vcast service which is dead in the water.

MS is always late. There first iteration of any product always sucks. They persist and make improvements. They make it 'good enough' as Melgross puts it and often dominate a market. I'm not saying this will happen with the mp3 market but I would wait and see the product before I declare it dead in the water.
post #36 of 108
Quote:
Originally posted by Token
I would dare to say that the iPod has been very slow in the innovative department, when compared to what exists on the market today.

Apple has been milking the iPod heavily the last few years and they need some serious competition!

I agree that competition will be good for Apple. They learned a lot from the "clone wars" in the 80's, and I think they'll fare better in this battle. We have seen that a head start may not mean much, though...

I also agree that Apple has been "slow" in innovation, but I think it's been deliberate. "Innovative" doesn't always mean "better." Apple's taking it slow and doing it right. I think the time has come for the iPhone and the PDA-Pod, but I'd hardly call that innovation - it's simply the next logical step.
post #37 of 108
That's the beauty of Apple, though. They don't just throw millions at some product and release it 4-6 months later (as Microsoft and other PC-based companies often do). Apple takes time and carefully designs and plans their products.

That is why Apple will always have better, more consumer-friendly products, even if it goes against our "instant gratification" culture.
post #38 of 108
The whole idea that finding a song is hard on a small player is a no go. Is it currently that hard to find a song on your iPod through the Browse feature? No, it's pretty darn easy. As long as the store allows you to scan through any number of layers, it should be fine. For instance, Genre -> Artist -> Album -> Song Name... seems pretty easy to me. And for really huge categories like "Artist", they may consider adding alphabetical subdivisions, so that you can jump right to the letter you're looking for, rather than scrolling through all artists in the alphabet. Sure, there won't be much space for advertising and glitter, but who cares?

As for organizing the songs... um, do you really need to organize on the iPod any more than you already can? You download it, it gets added to your iPod's library, and the next time you sync with your computer, it gets dropped into your computer's library. At which point you can organize as you see fit. All the album art and tags will already be in place because the store has them all set up for you... it's not like the mishmash of tags you find on P2P networks. If the tags aren't exactly how you like them, oh well. Wait until you get home before you tweak them.

And songs won't cost a bunch to buy. Assuming this is a WiFi player rather than a cellular player, it'll connect FOR FREE to whatever WiFi hotspot you're in. No bandwidth surcharges.

Is this useful? If it's just a mobile store, then only marginally. But if there's a Pandora-like feature, where you can listen to customized, streamed radio stations that constantly introduce you to new music, then yes. Hear a new song that you love while you're on the go? Make one or two clicks and the song is downloading to your player, without having to wait until you get home. And while you're there, you might buy other songs by that artist (or the whole album), or do some more browsing. If they also included an "Add to Wishlist" feature rather than just "Buy Now", that would be even better.

So no, I don't think this is so outlandish or riddled with insurmountable barriers. I think that if it's done right, it could be very slick and remain very simple. Will MS do it right? I wouldn't bet on it. But I'd love to have an Apple-designed, Pandora-using, iTMS-integrated, WiFi iPod.
post #39 of 108
Quote:
Originally posted by Chucker
Exactly. I don't want Apple to show signs of overconfidence, let alone arrogance. Healthy competition is always good; Apple is not exempt from that rule.

I am not sure where you are coming from here... to me every Stevenote already includes major arrogance, and I love it.

Apple has not had any serious competition from the inception of the iPod on... They keep the product fresh because Steve and Jonathan Ive are obsessive compulsive perfectionists. They will be consumed by the desire to make the iPod even thinner, and more elegant with or without Microsoft entering the fold. Steve has already indicated that they are working on wireless options (for earbuds), but have not found the technology to do it properly yet. Apple is weary of taking certain leaps too quickly, particularly when they compromise elegance/simplicity. And as for downloading songs over the air or whatever... Steve thinks the PC is the center of it all, Microsoft's bumbling wont change that. There is no way searching for songs on a small music player could possibly be elegant, unless it operates by mind control.
post #40 of 108
Quote:
Originally posted by wilco
But we don't know what will really be released...

Yet somehow you managed to go on and on, pointing out hypothetical flaws in a product none of us know anything about.

You're on the wrong site if you only want discussion of actual products, not rumored ones

And I'm criticizing an often-discussed product concept--whether it comes from Microsoft, or as I said, even if it were to come from Apple.

A valid and relevant topic, maybe?
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