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Apple's Jobs slams Zune, says player poses no concern

post #1 of 155
Thread Starter 
Apple Computer chief executive Steve Jobs said he does not see Microsoft's community-centric Zune device as a threat to his company's iPod digital media players.

"I've seen the demonstrations on the Internet about how you can find another person using a Zune and give them a song they can play three times. It takes forever," Jobs told Newsweek in an interview ahead of the iPods fifth anniversary next month.

"By the time you've gone through all that, the girl's got up and left! You're much better off to take one of your earbuds out and put it in her ear. Then you're connected with about two feet of headphone cable."

Jobs was equally unconcerned that the iPod could lose its cachet because of its growing popularity. "That's like saying you don't want to kiss your lover's lips because everyone has lips," he said. "It doesn't make any sense."

During the development of the iPod, which turns five years old on Oct. 23, Jobs said he knew he had struck a chord due to the device's internal appeal. "The way you can tell that you're onto something interesting is if everybody who knows about the project wants one themselves," he explained, "if they can't wait to go out and open up their own wallets to buy one."

For the iPod, one of the biggest insights Apple had was not to try to manage its music library on the iPod, but to manage it in iTunes, according to Jobs. "Other companies tried to do everything on the device itself and made it so complicated that it was useless," he said.

In the three-page interview with Newsweek, the Apple boss also professes his love for Levis and discuss the lengthy back-and-forth process with record labels that eventually led to the launch of the iTunes Music Store.

"It was a process over 18 months. We got to know these folks and we made a series of predictions that a lot of things they were trying would fail," Jobs said of the labels.

"Then they went and tried them, and they all failed, for the reasons that we had predicted. We kept coming back to visit them every month or two, and they started to believe that we might actually have some insight into this, and our credibility grew with them to the point where they were willing to take a chance with us."
post #2 of 155
Mr. Job's repeated inferences to girls and seduction make me think he has a strong female interest in his life... someone that affects him to a degree that he really can't stop thinking about her, his analogies albeit understandable, don't really sound like ones from a techie!
post #3 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by kmhtkmhtkmht

Mr. Job's repeated inferences to girls and seduction make me think he has a strong female interest in his life... someone that affects him to a degree that he really can't stop thinking about her, his analogies albeit understandable, don't really sound like ones from a techie!

Maybe his wife?
post #4 of 155
Zune will fail (another one bites the dust).

Why, whith all that interest from Gizmodo etc.?
Because of the simple fact that it is designed by geeks for geeks - and there are way to few geeks (willing to accept an ugly brown brick) in the world...

"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius - and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction."
Albert Einstein

The iPod have always been slammed by (geek) critics for not having radio, an equlizer, a microphone and dozens of other non essential things - but Apple held on to KISS.
I bought the Generation 1 iPod for exactly that reason - i.e. it played MP3's. Period.
So did millions of other people.

In order to compete with the iPod one (SanDisk?, iRiver?) must beat the iPod on it's own turf, i.e. make something smaller, even less complex and cheaper - and as good looking...
Very few companies could pull that off - and certainly not Dell or M$.

The only way the iPod could loose it's edge is if iTunes turns into an unstable Bloatware and if the 'pod would stop playing non-DRM music (or when mobile phones turns into serious contenders).
post #5 of 155
"...lover's lips..." -- you gotta love it! Great come-back to the Zune-loving media!
post #6 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by gregmightdothat

Maybe his wife?

seems likely!

I do agree about the Zune although the lover's lips analogy doesn't quite work for me; I think it should be, do you want a girlfriend/boyfriend when everyone else has one?
post #7 of 155
I don't know. I bet some girls will like Ballmer's approach: "Hey, babe, let me squirt ya one".
When they said "Think Different", I ran with it.
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When they said "Think Different", I ran with it.
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post #8 of 155
Maybe MS will sell condoms at the Zune marketplace.
post #9 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by murk

I don't know. I bet some girls will like Ballmer's approach: "Hey, babe, let me squirt ya one".

post #10 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by backtomac

Maybe MS will sell condoms at the Zune marketplace.

To put on your Zune to prevent it transfering viruses to other Zunes?
post #11 of 155
Yeah, I'm going to disagree with Jobs on this one. The Zune really should pose a rather large concern.

First off, I personally wouldn't touch a Zune with a 10 foot pole. But other people, with the great price and seemingly new and interesting features might.

As everyone here knows they're willing to become a rather large loss leader and then some, so with that said I seriously doubt Microsoft is looking to overtake the iPod with its first-generation Zune. By 3rd gen they're probably looking to be a strong, worthy competitor, and until then they're looking to polish off all of the kinks in their software/hardware.

The average person isn't willing to transfer from iTMS you say? I would disagree.

1) The average person has only spent 20 dollars in the iTMS. Not a huge investment.
2) The techno-savy teenage demographic is where MIcrosoft is really targeting. By linking its program with the very trendy, very cool MTV, they made a very smart move that could really gain them marketshare. And again, this is 1st gen - they aren't looking to conquer now.

And the large popularity of the iPod is indeed dangerous. How can one keep the cool going when everyone and their mother has one? Everyone who has a fleeting interest in Apple should know how easy and how cool and easy it is to make fun of the popular product (see: Windows, Vista). A popular product has so many users all of its flaws, no matter the size, will eventually be exposed.

But, of course, the response will be that the reason why everyone makes fun of Windows/Vista isn't due to popularity, but due to their problems. The argument will be that the genius of the iPod is in it's simplicity. Well, yes, this is true, but as-a-whole the quality control of the iPod has decreased dramatically.

What happened to the wall jack, now requiring an extra purchase of 30 dollars? Yes, the first few gens. of iPods needed one because they couldn't charge with a USB, however with the 3rd/4th gens they included BOTH computer charging and a wall jack. The iPod itself has come under siege after tons of users have reported scratching (not fixed with the reg. iPod, only the nano). iTunes 7 was anything but quality tested. And while my 3rd Gen iPod lasted a good 2 1/2 years, I've gone through 5 iPods in the last year and a half. Yikes.

ONCE AGAIN: I personally wouldn't buy a Zune. I love my iPod, more than most things in my life, and my next mp3 player purchase will remain in the Apple family. I'm willing to love it in spite of its faults, NOT because it's a nearly-flawless product. If the Zune is polished, and the only problem it has is wi-fi connectivity between itself and other Zunes, then Apple does indeed have a reason to be scared.

Now isn't a time to be cocky, Jobs. Now's the time to demolish the product through the company's actions, not its words.
---

Switcher as of 3/19/2006
Owner of a 15", 2 GHz MacBook Pro
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Switcher as of 3/19/2006
Owner of a 15", 2 GHz MacBook Pro
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post #12 of 155
Jobs was equally unconcerned that the iPod could lose its cache because of its growing popularity.

The iPod might lose its stockpile? It might lose it's auxiliary memory? Did you mean cachet ? Getting that one wrong is a bit much compared to a recent article on AI that correctly used some long word that almost nobody ever used at any point in their life.

Edit: It's a quote from the linked article. Maybe I should go and heckle MSNBC & Newsweek while I am at it too.

The headline is a bit too provocative, the tone that is in the linked article is pretty mellow in my opinion.
post #13 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdnc101

First off, I personally wouldn't touch a Zune with a 10 foot pole. But other people, with the great price and seemingly new and interesting features might.

Huh? It's the same price.

Quote:
By linking its program with the very trendy, very cool MTV, they made a very smart move that could really gain them marketshare.

MTV? You mean through URGE? I think you're confusing Zune Marketplace with Windows Media Player 11.

http://news.com.com/Microsofts+Zune+...3-6097196.html
Quote:
An MTV Networks representative said the company couldn't say what if any role MTV and Urge would play with Zune.
post #14 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chucker

Huh? It's the same price.



MTV? You mean through URGE? I think you're confusing Zune Marketplace with Windows Media Player 11.

http://news.com.com/Microsofts+Zune+...3-6097196.html

Well damn, my bad. My points aren't half as valid now.

As for the price thing, it was more of a features vs. price issue.
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post #15 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by backtomac

Maybe MS will sell condoms at the Zune marketplace.

Zunedoms
post #16 of 155
Apple really has a strong hand in this battle. Many analysts feel that the initial Zune will loose money and only take market share from other windows media players. If so Apple will make MS pay dearly for market share.
post #17 of 155
The iPod will NOT lose it's popularity. Everyone I know from the third graders that just learned what it is to the seniors in college want one, or love the one they have. It is nowhere near losing its popularity.

Also I can't see the Zune being a threat to anyone, except the other companies that own like 1/2 a percent of the marketshare. The iPod is just too big, it isn't an "mp3 player" anymore it's an "iPod" or a "cheap iPod copy."
post #18 of 155
Jobs needs to remember that consumers do not always choose based on superiority of product. They frequently choose on what they want to do and who is there to hand them the product to do it with. This is what first gave AOL and Netscape the edge on Internet access and browsers. When most consumers wanted to go online, they either had a free AOL disc laying around or got an ISP who gave them Netscape. There was no browser built into Windows, so for years most Internet users were on AOL or Netscape. This is much like the iPod/iTunes combination - one begot the other. Consumers wanted to get songs on-line and they wanted to carry them with them. Apple gave them the first, best, and simplest method to do both.

Well today Internet Explorer reigns supreme for one simple reason: MS bundled it with Windows (along with ISP and AOL access) so the consumer could just buy a new PC and get right on-line. It was simple and they did not have to worry about CD-ROMs or downloads, etc. And while the iPod rules today, much like Netscape & AOL it is ripe for attack.

If MS puts that same clout behind the Zune it will be a real player in this market (no pun intended). Imagine the non-tech-savvy user getting a new Vista PC. A splashy intro to Windows shows the Zune and tells the consumer how it is "plug-and-play" with everything they have. They don't need to download from some other site! I believe the average consumer will go with what they perceive to be the easiest solution to their needs. They want a music player, they grew up watching MTV, and their new computer tells them this is all they need to buy to get what they want!

Here's where Apple can (and hopefully will) win: Where AOL and Netscape stayed stagnant in their product development, Apple should move leaps and bounds ahead. Perhaps even finding some way to partially re-invent the market (again). I hope the full touch screen iPod and Apple Phone are for real, are done right, and are coming soon. Otherwise I think the mere marketing power of MS could make the Zune a contender, even technologically it is not.
post #19 of 155
I'm concerned. It's cachet.

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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post #20 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdnc101

Well damn, my bad. My points aren't half as valid now.

As for the price thing, it was more of a features vs. price issue.

The only real feature is the WiFi. It's only useful when several people you know have bought it. And they have to be people who are interested in exchanging music for three days or less.

While I haven't bothered to see just how their version of WiFi works, it doesn't seem to be able to use a "hot spot" either, so it's not much of a feature.

And if you compose a song for your beloved, and "Squirt" it to her (or him), (s)he will be thrilled to find out that it too will disappear in three days, or three plays.
post #21 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ Rizzo

Jobs needs to remember that consumers do not always choose based on superiority of product. They frequently choose on what they want to do and who is there to hand them the product to do it with. This is what first gave AOL and Netscape the edge on Internet access and browsers. When most consumers wanted to go online, they either had a free AOL disc laying around or got an ISP who gave them Netscape. There was no browser built into Windows, so for years most Internet users were on AOL or Netscape. This is much like the iPod/iTunes combination - one begot the other. Consumers wanted to get songs on-line and they wanted to carry them with them. Apple gave them the first, best, and simplest method to do both.

Well today Internet Explorer reigns supreme for one simple reason: MS bundled it with Windows (along with ISP and AOL access) so the consumer could just buy a new PC and get right on-line. It was simple and they did not have to worry about CD-ROMs or downloads, etc. And while the iPod rules today, much like Netscape & AOL it is ripe for attack.

If MS puts that same clout behind the Zune it will be a real player in this market (no pun intended). Imagine the non-tech-savvy user getting a new Vista PC. A splashy intro to Windows shows the Zune and tells the consumer how it is "plug-and-play" with everything they have. They don't need to download from some other site! I believe the average consumer will go with what they perceive to be the easiest solution to their needs. They want a music player, they grew up watching MTV, and their new computer tells them this is all they need to buy to get what they want!

Here's where Apple can (and hopefully will) win: Where AOL and Netscape stayed stagnant in their product development, Apple should move leaps and bounds ahead. Perhaps even finding some way to partially re-invent the market (again). I hope the full touch screen iPod and Apple Phone are for real, are done right, and are coming soon. Otherwise I think the mere marketing power of MS could make the Zune a contender, even technologically it is not.

What you are saying isn't entirely true.

AOL was by far, the best way to get onto the internet for several critical years. It wasn't the only way. There were several viable competitors, but none had the features AOL had. This changed later. But in the beginning AOL was the best.

The same is true of Netscape. Some copies were given by ISP's, that's true, but they sold many copies at $39.95. I still have my box with it. It was also, by far, the best browser for several years. That changed as well. After MS gave IE away, even before they integrated it into the OS, it killed Netscape's sales, and down went the R&D. By version 4, IE became somewhat better.

Netscape's mistake was in advocating, and adhering to, the idea of an open specification. Every development they made was free for any other browser writer to use. MS took advantage of this, and when they had the major share began to write closed specs. That shut every other browser out, as companies began to write to IE. You know Active X and all that jazz.

But Zune is different. Apple hasn't succumbed to the open spec idea here. MS can't grab it away.

Zune will have to stand entirely on its own. No doubt, people will buy it. There are people who will only buy MS products just as there are those who will only buy Apple products.

But that's a small bunch on either side. MS will have to convince the general public that they will prefer Zune. That will be tough. Even Ballmer had to prevent his own kids from buying iPods.

They might accept a Zune from him, but they won't be too happy.

I expect most people will feel the same way.
post #22 of 155
You go girlfriend!!! Steve Jobs is da man. Watch, friends, as instead of defending company losses or dodgy share options or talking about how he pimped his private jet, he wistfully paints a picture of lying in the soft spring grass, your friend and you sharing a tune - "If I just lay here.... Would you lie with me.... And forget the world...." (Snow Patrol - Chasing Cars). No squirting things at each other and watching hourglasses on the screen, just sharing earphones. Then maybe when the time is right, locking lips under blue skies dotted with lazy white cottonball clouds drifting in the warm wind. Love. Music. Life. iPod. A soft sunset starts to spread its wings on the horizon, as you cuddle a bit more closely and watch the streams of people go by.

Steve Ballmer, you d*ckhead, THIS sells mp3 players. Not just running up to people and squirting stuff at them and touching them in many places. Dating 101. Straight/ Gay/ Bi/ Friends/ Just Friends/ Maybe More/ Whatever. Dating 102: Now, admittedly, *some* people may like people running up to them and touching them and squirting stuff at them. That's cool too. Whatever floats your boat. Just like a brown Zune. I'm not going to hate people that buy them, I'm just going to reiterate how Apple just gets it and Microsoft just doesn't. Period.

....................................
Zune: P*WNED! HA!
....................................
post #23 of 155
Just sharing the library much like iTunes does for any nearby ipod seems like a much better idea than just uploading a file that's going to expire. Much like sharing earbuds only using WiFi.
post #24 of 155
He's right about the earbud being easier than the wireless. Also you get to share headphones with the girl. Another option would be for new iPods to come with 2 headphone jacks.
post #25 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross

What you are saying isn't entirely true.

[...]
The same is true of Netscape. Some copies were given by ISP's, that's true, but they sold many copies at $39.95. I still have my box with it. It was also, by far, the best browser for several years. That changed as well. After MS gave IE away, even before they integrated it into the OS, it killed Netscape's sales, and down went the R&D. By version 4, IE became somewhat better.

Netscape's mistake was in advocating, and adhering to, the idea of an open specification. Every development they made was free for any other browser writer to use. MS took advantage of this, and when they had the major share began to write closed specs. That shut every other browser out, as companies began to write to IE. You know Active X and all that jazz.

But Zune is different. Apple hasn't succumbed to the open spec idea here. MS can't grab it away.

I think you missed the part where Microsoft told OEMs that they would no longer be able to license Windows to include as the OS on their PCs if they included Netscape as the browser on their systems.

Broadband was far less common and downloading Netscape was a non-trivial effort for typical home consumers. In the business world, it was cheaper and easier to deal with one company for OS/browser configuration and support than two.

I think Microsoft could cut into the iPod's sales, if they could provide Windows software good enough to discourage people from downloading/installing iTunes. But since the iPod is a hardware package, you just include the software with the hardware. With broadband being common today, getting updates is far easier.
post #26 of 155
By the time you do all that, Bono, Oprah will be gone... quick! Just share the buds...
post #27 of 155
Lover's lips analogy is just plain wrong.
A lot of the interest in iPod stems from the prestige that (used to) comes with it.

A correct analogy would be: would you want a ferrari, if everybody else had one?
post #28 of 155
There is no comparison between bundling software for free with their own OS and selling a $250 nicknack. And as another poster poignantly pointed out, there are no more 'mp3 players'; there are iPods and iPod knock-offs. Zune is another half-baked idea proposed by corporate stooges to appeal to people they don't understand. With each revision it will adopt more and more featuritis, and become more Windows-like to use.

This product will fail. Microsoft can't innovate, they can only catch up yo where Apple was 5 years ago.
post #29 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii

He's right about the earbud being easier than the wireless. Also you get to share headphones with the girl. Another option would be for new iPods to come with 2 headphone jacks.

Tiny stereo mini splitter: $4.
post #30 of 155
It's not only Zune that has to compete with the iPod. It's whatever Zune's music management software is vs. iTunes. Anybody who's used iTunes falls in love with it. And if they have a library as complicated as mine (smart playlists, grouping keywords, etc.) There's no way they're going to switch.

Also, correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the Zune marketplace a rental based program? If it is, history has proven that doesn't work.
post #31 of 155
i think M$ have made the same mistake as a lot of other player have, its all too complicated. the ipod is simple. enough said. the zune, after watching a demo video on the internet, looks like a lot of work to do anything. its got so many features with all different menus, clicks, turning it sideways and a load of other shit. it looks to me that you'd get one, play with everything, get bored, get fed up of having to look through a million different menu's to do one thing. sillyness
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post #32 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by akerman

Lover's lips analogy is just plain wrong.
A lot of the interest in iPod stems from the prestige that (used to) comes with it.

A correct analogy would be: would you want a ferrari, if everybody else had one?

Does an iPod cost 10-15x what another MP3 player costs?

Oh, nope, Job's has the closer analogy.
post #33 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by akerman

A correct analogy would be: would you want a ferrari, if everybody else had one?

Well, what would the alternatives be? If an iPod being a Ferrari, what would a Zune be?
post #34 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by Strawberry

Well, what would the alternatives be? If an iPod being a Ferrari, what would a Zune be?

A hummer.

greg: The iPod is still the most expensive around compared to functionality, and by all accounts it has the best design. A lot of people buy it to show it off - with those signature white buds. If everybody had it, there would be nothing to show off anymore. You may not believe that, and obviously Jobs doesn't - but I think most marketeers would agree.
post #35 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by akerman

A hummer.

greg: The iPod is still the most expensive around compared to functionality, and by all accounts it has the best design. A lot of people buy it to show it off - with those signature white buds. If everybody had it, there would be nothing to show off anymore. You may not believe that, and obviously Jobs doesn't - but I think most marketeers would agree.

Everyone already has an iPod, and I have never met anyone who bought an iPod to "show it off".
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post #36 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by bdj21ya

Tiny stereo mini splitter: $4.

The look on the girl's face as you use the ear bud wires to reel her in for a kiss: Priceless.


A week or so ago while arguing with Woody, the AI Zune guy, I started to describe the same "girl" scenario as Steve used in the interview . I was going to describe how much sexier it was to share an iPod with the cute girl than to leer at her will trying to make a connection with your Zune. She looks accross the crowded bus and you are staring at her while fumbling with something in you lap.
When they said "Think Different", I ran with it.
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post #37 of 155
MTV is very cool and trendy? I thought it stopped being cool and trendy sometime in the early 90's. Has it come back around or something?
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post #38 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by e1618978

Everyone already has an iPod, and I have never met anyone who bought an iPod to "show it off".

Obviously you have not been in middle school recently. iPod status is very big there, with lots of kids vying to have the latest iPod out there.

I don't think the Zune (especially in Brown) will have much of an impact on the iPod cachet.
post #39 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by akerman

A hummer.

greg: The iPod is still the most expensive around compared to functionality, and by all accounts it has the best design. A lot of people buy it to show it off - with those signature white buds. If everybody had it, there would be nothing to show off anymore. You may not believe that, and obviously Jobs doesn't - but I think most marketeers would agree.

But it's still *cheaper* than the Zune, which is also lacking functionality, like video.

The features the iPod is lacking are generally features 99% of people don't want, like voice recording, etc..., and you can get those as add-ons.

In other words, the iPod is cheaper than the Zune, in the eyes of 99% of the people has the same features, is smaller, easier to use, looks better, and for the same price.

It's not a Ferrari, or something people get bored with. Your analogy doesn't hold. Jobs' analogy was a little awkward, but it was dead-on accurate: people don't have iPods, or girlfriends, because they're trendy (unless you're 12, according to cwolozynski)
post #40 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdnc101

Yeah, I'm going to disagree with Jobs on this one. The Zune really should pose a rather large concern.

Unless Jobs has some type of new revolutionary iPod coming out (maybe next week) that will blow EVERYTHING out of the water.
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