Originally posted by ALPICH
Well I am glad my iMac can run Windows. I am quite worried that Apple does not have the power to take on MS in this area. MS is entering the market when the product is finallly mature and of course they have already started to make their jukebox software to feel like iTunes (Well the good bits anyways... not that Apple was the first either) So MS with their MS iZod will probably have an impact. Another concerns is the recent report stating MS will give people a copy of their music purchased from Apple free with Windows Media Player. This is not good news. If Apple does not release new products that compete with MS and of course match their price point (remember that the XBox 360 is subsidiesed by Microsoft to get market penetration and the flow on royalties from software) Apple has a serious problem. Still Apple knows how to innovate and as the market grows in its maturity Apple might just be happy with having a two horse race. I look forward to reading about the software geek who gets MS protected music working in iTunes. Probably wont be that hard to convert. Just like you can put any crap video with a protected ACC file in iMovie and then rip out the audio with Quicktime to remove the protection, you will probably be able to do the same thing just by using a Flip4Mac WMV plugin... not that I recommend doing such a thing. I do actually like keeping to the law in respect to copy protection... No really.
Respectufully, you're concern in unjustified.
Apple has huge market penetration in both the Windows and Mac worlds with the iPod. They have fought off multiple cometitors that offer players with universal compatibility and arguably better features.
One reason is that the iPod has become a cultural phenomenon. It's a househould name, pardon the cliche. I've related the story here before. When I went to buy my iPod at the King of Prussia Mall (PA) Apple store last December, I saw it first hand. I was getting ready to get on the elevator, and I heard people in front of me talking. They said they needed to go to "the iPod store." I shit you not. We even have an "iPod economy" now, estimated to be $700 million.
Another reason is that people like the iTunes music store experience. It's penetration is huge, and it's also become a household name of sorts.
A third reason is Apple's own ability to innovate. I have no doubt that wireless pods are not far away...and "true video" iPods too. Wait until they get into movies. It's coming. Apple didn't invent the .mp3 player, but remember, they did essentially popularize it.
Now what does M$ have to do? First, there's a philosophical problem. Apple created a product it thought would be successful. The reason it was MORE than successful was that it didn't create the product for that sole reason. They created it for the purpose
of innovation, and for the purpose of making peope's live's better. They innovate because they're Apple...and it makes them lots of money. What about Microsoft? Microsoft is releasing this product for one reason: To compete with the iPod.
Oh sure, I know...that's business. But that philosophical difference is all
the difference. It will drive features, price, performance, look, feel...everything. At Apple, it's about the best possible experience for the customer. Every product must meet Job's own standards. When it does, they release it, and reap the financial rewards.
Microsoft must do what the rest of the mp3 market cannot...convince people not to buy and iPod and to buy their product instead. That's a tall order given the iPod's penetration and name recognition. My prediction is that the Zune will fail or perhaps only moderately succeed, even with all the $ Microsoft will put behind it.