Creative introduces iPod video knockoff

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Comments

  • Reply 61 of 99
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 18,020member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Chris Cuilla

    The other point here with MS is that MS is going to make $ somewhere. Now with XBox it is with games/game-licensing. So losing $ on the box to get a gagillion games sold is the play.



    With online music market it appears a little different. MS wants to make $ on license-fees for every MP3 player sold that uses their software. So, if they start making one and selling it at a loss, no $ made...just losing $. If they want a tithe for every song sold, the story is the same. They cannot sell below cost and make $.



    Apple has triangulated this whole thing fairly well.



    So what do we have?



    1. Online music stores:

    a. Cannot make a profit on the music (except with subscriptions, which the music companies haven't yet authorized and could shut down at any time) because of the market price Apple set ($0.99/song).

    b. Music selection is basically the same as Apple's so no way to effectively differentiate offerings.

    c. Always a risk that (on subscriptions) Apple could just "turn on the subscription switch" and then "game over".

    d. As Apple sells more songs, their opportunity to get better pricing from the music companies increases ("volume discounts") further enabling Apple to make profit on the music sold or sell at a lower cost squeezing competitors even further.

    e. Doomed.



    2. Hardware vendors:

    a. Because of Apple's dominant position, unable to get the best prices (or even get the supply!) on component parts...must settle for lower profit margins than Apple or higher prices...always living in fear that Apple could just lower its margins and squeeze you.

    b. Doesn't work with the dominant music store/format.

    c. Not providing any features that Apple, if it found they were in demand, couldn't add in a heartbeat.

    d. Doomed but perhaps less so than #1.



    Finally, Fairplay licensing...Apple hasn't played this card yet (Motorola test-case excepted)...mostly I suspect because they don't need to. But they do have it to play and I think they will eventually. But it will play out like this...as Apple begins to get pressure on per unit profit margins on their iPods, they'll watch as those margins approach what they could make on a per unit basis for Fairplay licensing to hardware vendors, and possibly slowly open the door to it. Maybe Sony first. Only 3-4 to begin. Once it begins to happen then Apple will be making $ on every digital music player sold whether they make/sell it or not.






    I agree with your thinking. While it's impossible to predict how long Apple's dominance will last, I think they're in a very good position.



    However, it is interesting to take notice of the parallels between Apple now and the Apple of the mid eighties. Apple was dominating the PC market then too, and refusing to open up their system or liscense the Mac OS. I cannot believe that Jobs would not see this, which is why I have to agree with your comments on Apple's plan to pretty much own the entire digital music market.



    As of now, no Mp3 player can match Apple's in terms of desirability. Others can talk about specs and features but people don't care because they want the total iPod experience. iPod has now become a household name. Ask a kid or even an adult what they want for Christmas, and if they mention anything MP3 player related...they're going to say "I want an iPod." They're not going to ask for a "video-capable MP3 player".



    Those predicting Apple's loss of marketshare might have a point...eventually. But, it won't happen until the market is saturated. Right now, Apple is on track to sell at least 25 million iPods per year. PER YEAR! It could get to the point where iPod becomes as ubiquitous as "Coke"...or in other words it would become so much of a household name that it wouldn't matter what brand an iPod like device was...it would still be called an iPod.
  • Reply 62 of 99
    Quote:

    Originally posted by SDW2001

    However, it is interesting to take notice of the parallels between Apple now and the Apple of the mid eighties. Apple was dominating the PC market then too, and refusing to open up their system or liscense the Mac OS.



    Many people like to make this comparison, but it is a faulty one.



    In the mid-eighties Apple was not dominating the PC market at all. In fact quite the opposite. The Apple II was on the decline, the Apple III never amounted to much, nor did Lisa. Macintosh was the last great hope. While it was technologically superior in some ways (at least from a user-interface perspective), it was considered under-powered and over-priced, and thought to be a "toy" by many business people ("only kids play with mice"...funny huh?) and did not sell very well as a result.



    The bottom line is that Apple never had anywhere near the market share with the Macintosh (or Apple II) as they currently do with iPod. Apple's peak market share for the Macintosh was 12% in 1992. Even the Apple II market share never got above 16%.



    Finally, the markets (personal computers vs. consumer electronics) are totally different beasts. One is far more business-oriented, the other consumer-oriented. One plays very well to Apple's strengths...the other played well to IBM's (and now Microsoft's) strengths.
  • Reply 63 of 99
    kotatsukotatsu Posts: 1,010member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Denmaru

    Hmm.. Looking at my 3rd Gen iPod, I´m quite tempted. And *gasp*, the Design looks pretts good, too.

    If it plays Xvid, then the better - I´d love to watch my Anime on the go :3







    I watch anime on my 5G iPod. On some fansubs the subtitles can be a little small, but the screen is so sharp they're rarely hard to read.



    Every now and again I just batch up a load of xVids in Videora, then import them into iTunes and onto the iPod the next morning.



    Works great, and looks great on the little iPod screen.
  • Reply 64 of 99
    btw, of relevance to this thread today...



    DivX v6 for Mac announced. Supports Quicktime7. That should make transcoding easier.



    http://www.divx.com/divx/mac/
  • Reply 65 of 99
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,584member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by stustanley

    ok, thiought id line up the specs of the Zen Vision M and the 30gb iPod side by side.



    1. Capacity

    Zen: 30gb

    iPod: 30gb



    2. Physical Size

    Zen: 104 x 62 x 18.6 mm

    iPod: 104 x 61 x 11 mm



    3. Weight

    Zen: 163g

    iPod: 136g



    4. Screen

    Zen: 2.5" LCD, 320 x 240

    iPod: 2.5" LCD, 320 x 240



    5. Battery Life

    Zen: up to 14 hours (MP3, 128kbps, 4mins/song)

    up to 8 hours (WMA, 64kbps, 4mins/song)

    up to 14 hours (FM radio)

    up to 4 hours (Video, MPEG 4, 500kbps)

    iPod: up to 14 hours (AAC, 128kbps, 4mins/song)

    up to 2 hours (Video, h.264 750kbps with 128kbps audio)



    6. Supported audio formats:

    Zen: MP3, WMA, WAV

    iPod: AAC, MP3, AIFF, WAV, Apple Lossless



    7. Supported Video Formats:

    Zen: DivX? 4 & 5, XviD5, MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG4-SP, WMV9, Motion-JPEG (May not play all Divx 4 & 5 files)

    iPod: H.264, MPEG4



    8. Additional Features

    Zen: FM Radio, Built in microphone, contacts, calendar

    iPod: contacts, calendar, world clock, screen lock, games



    ok, think i got everything, anything else let us know!!



    stu




    They have nothing to compete with the scroll wheel, or the iTunes/iPod combo. Their controller has been knocked many times already.



    This is interesting:



    http://www.forbes.com/2005/12/09/ipo..._1209ipod.html
  • Reply 66 of 99
    Quote:

    Originally posted by rdas7

    hThe build quality on these things is horrible and they're priced the same as a real iPod. Why not just get an iPod?





    oh please, and it isn't on the iPod? Everyone I know, me included, who has an ipod has had some trouble with at some point along the way (you seem to also be forgetting 2 class action suits specifically complaining about poor build quality for the ipod? How many class action suits have been brought against creative?). Im not against Ipod, I own one and love it, but lets be honest, assuming these specs live up to what they claim, Creative has a better product out there on the market. It doesn't have the syncability that Apple does but then again its not up against the mac market, its mainly for windows users who dont give a rats a*s about iTunes and are willing to take on other syncability options.





    Stop blindly sticking up for a company with equal amounts of faults as the next guy. And to answer your question, you can't go just by price, they are the same price but Creative offers more with their product then iPod does (or at least more to certain people who deem it to be more).





    However, I really must say they REALLY lost the mark by coming in sooo late in the christmas season. Im aware SIngapore is not a christian country, but don't they have any advisors? Doesn't this Hoo guy know that this product should have been delivered to store shelves a month ago at least?
  • Reply 67 of 99
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,584member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by reykjavik

    oh please, and it isn't on the iPod? Everyone I know, me included, who has an ipod has had some trouble with at some point along the way (you seem to also be forgetting 2 class action suits specifically complaining about poor build quality for the ipod? How many class action suits have been brought against creative?). Im not against Ipod, I own one and love it, but lets be honest, assuming these specs live up to what they claim, Creative has a better product out there on the market. It doesn't have the syncability that Apple does but then again its not up against the mac market, its mainly for windows users who dont give a rats a*s about iTunes and are willing to take on other syncability options.





    Stop blindly sticking up for a company with equal amounts of faults as the next guy. And to answer your question, you can't go just by price, they are the same price but Creative offers more with their product then iPod does (or at least more to certain people who deem it to be more).




    You aren't totally correct either.



    Apple has had no suits about "build quality". They have had a suit about battery life, which they are appealing, and should never have lost.



    They have a suit about scratches, which may or may not be viable.



    They may, in the past, have had some other minor suit that I don't remember, but not about Build quality.



    Besides, the Creative does copy slavishly from Apple's desighn. That's obvious to everyone, and was no doubt intended.



    they are also priced $30 higher than Apple's product.



    But they still don't have a scrollwheel, which has been lauded as being, by far, the best navigation method of any device. Creative's has been less than sucessful with theirs, according to the reviews.



    As to the "extras". Who really cares about them except for a very small minority? If Creative picks up a couple percent of the market because of them, great. But it doesn't pay for Apple to bother.



    The big problen I've been reading about now is the lack of product. Apparently, this lack is increasing demand for other manufacturers players.



    So, ironically, Creative might enjoy some sales simply because Apple can't make enough.
  • Reply 68 of 99
    Quote:

    Originally posted by melgross

    You aren't totally correct either.



    Apple has had no suits about "build quality". They have had a suit about battery life, which they are appealing, and should never have lost.



    They have a suit about scratches, which may or may not be viable.



    But they still don't have a scrollwheel, which has been lauded as being, by far, the best navigation method of any device. Creative's has been less than sucessful with theirs, according to the reviews.





    ehh, call it what you will, a product that doesn't work exactly as claimed (and exessive scratches to me is the same thing) is poor quality. I dont care what the technical definition of "build quality" is but as an end consumer all I know is that Apple "built" it and it had problems.



    Anyway, who cares....



    As for the scroll wheel, you should visit their site, they have a cool approach to the scroll wheel which I must say looks kind of cool. I think it entails a bit more finger usage, which may or may not be irritating (Ive never used one) but the approach looks nice.
  • Reply 69 of 99
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,584member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by reykjavik

    ehh, call it what you will, a product that doesn't work exactly as claimed (and exessive scratches to me is the same thing) is poor quality. I dont care what the technical definition of "build quality" is but as an end consumer all I know is that Apple "built" it and it had problems.



    Anyway, who cares....



    As for the scroll wheel, you should visit their site, they have a cool approach to the scroll wheel which I must say looks kind of cool. I think it entails a bit more finger usage, which may or may not be irritating (Ive never used one) but the approach looks nice.




    You may make up your own definition, and that's fine for you, but built quality means more than scratches. If you read the ARs test on the Nano, you'll see what build quality means.



    I know a lot of people with iPods, and while some have had a problem, most haven't. When my friends daughter and I went to the Apple store here in NYC, because she DID have a problem, the "Genius" took a minute to verify the problem, gave her a form to sign that she was having it replaced, and gave her another one. Will Creative do that?



    As for the Creative control bar, it's been rated as a poor substitute for the scrollwheel.



    Instead of guessing, read some reviews.
  • Reply 70 of 99
    rara Posts: 623member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Chris Cuilla

    Finally, Fairplay licensing...Apple hasn't played this card yet (Motorola test-case excepted)...



    Apple never licensed Fairplay to Motorola, they just wrote a version of iTunes that works on Motorola phones and made an agreement to include it with them.
  • Reply 71 of 99
    chuckerchucker Posts: 5,089member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by reykjavik

    lets be honest, assuming these specs live up to what they claim, Creative has a better product out there on the market.



    It's almost twice as thick, has an inferior user interface, has terrible button arrangement with incredibly stupid icons, is heavier, has better video playback but worse audio playback battery life, plays some more codecs but doesn't play AAC nor Ogg Vorbis and has features that appeal to a small minority and are available as an option for the iPod. It's also slightly more expensive.



    Yes, certainly a better product.
  • Reply 72 of 99
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 18,020member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Chris Cuilla

    Many people like to make this comparison, but it is a faulty one.



    In the mid-eighties Apple was not dominating the PC market at all. In fact quite the opposite. The Apple II was on the decline, the Apple III never amounted to much, nor did Lisa. Macintosh was the last great hope. While it was technologically superior in some ways (at least from a user-interface perspective), it was considered under-powered and over-priced, and thought to be a "toy" by many business people ("only kids play with mice"...funny huh?) and did not sell very well as a result.



    The bottom line is that Apple never had anywhere near the market share with the Macintosh (or Apple II) as they currently do with iPod. Apple's peak market share for the Macintosh was 12% in 1992. Even the Apple II market share never got above 16%.



    Finally, the markets (personal computers vs. consumer electronics) are totally different beasts. One is far more business-oriented, the other consumer-oriented. One plays very well to Apple's strengths...the other played well to IBM's (and now Microsoft's) strengths.




    You're missing the point. I'm not saying the numbers are all that similar. It's the principle that's similar. As for the markets being different, I disagree. They are similar enough. Apple lost its battles in the consumer marketplace, not just the business world.
  • Reply 73 of 99
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,584member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by SDW2001

    You're missing the point. I'm not saying the numbers are all that similar. It's the principle that's similar. As for the markets being different, I disagree. They are similar enough. Apple lost its battles in the consumer marketplace, not just the business world.



    No, the markets are very different.



    If you talk about software vs songs and video, you can see that.



    What does the iPod have to be compatable with that it can't play? Any song can be ripped (legally) to an iPod. The jury is still out with video because it's too new, but even there, Apple has already sold more 5G's than all video player manufacturers have sold in the past two years. So that is looking good as well.



    A computer is simply not comparable. It's much more expensive, much more complex, needs different, often expensive software that has to be upgraded, etc.
  • Reply 74 of 99
    I don't understand why anyone would think that this creative product in any way 'looks good'. It is quite a bit ugly. This always get simple. Fridges use to look wacky and they sold but eventually they all started to look the same and the ones that sell the best are the ones that are simple to match things to. The same with TV's and also with Cars. They all start looking the same. The reality is Apple already has simplicity down pat. As for the user interface patient issue. I am imagining that there will be a new interface soon enough, thanks to the new colour screens. Think ************************************************** *************. I was going to give a suggestion here but think I will go patient it instead.
  • Reply 75 of 99
    ajmasajmas Posts: 601member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by mike518

    to CREATIVE: youve lost the mp3 "war", go back to making sound cards and shut the hell up (btw im now boycotting their cards). Your players are heavy, expensive, akward and have crappy software, and no ones gonna buy a more expensive than the original knock-off. You cant be "creative" and "invent" (pun intended) so cut your loses and get out of the market. [/B]



    That sounds like the arrogance that would help lose the next battle. As long as Creative is still making money they still have a running chance. If Apple took the same attitude that you do then it would mean that the iPod would be sunk in the next cycle. In the market place you always have to act as if you might lose the next battle and do everything to try to win it.
  • Reply 76 of 99
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,584member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by ajmas

    That sounds like the arrogance that would help lose the next battle. As long as Creative is still making money they still have a running chance. If Apple took the same attitude that you do then it would mean that the iPod would be sunk in the next cycle. In the market place you always have to act as if you might lose the next battle and do everything to try to win it.



    Right now, they aren't making money. They're in the position of seeing their sales go up, and having their losses follow. This quarter will be a very important one for them.
  • Reply 77 of 99
    Quote:

    Originally posted by SDW2001

    You're missing the point. I'm not saying the numbers are all that similar. It's the principle that's similar. As for the markets being different, I disagree. They are similar enough. Apple lost its battles in the consumer marketplace, not just the business world.



    First the numbers are so vastly different as to be signficant in the analysis. Second, the principle may or may not apply based on the analysis. Finally, Apple's success in the consumer or business market was never above 15% share.



    I think we're dealing with a very different scenario. We're also dealign with a very different Apple. I actually suspect that Apple has (and will continue to do) the "algebra" on licensing, etc. And when/if it makes sense, will do it.
  • Reply 78 of 99
    Quote:

    Originally posted by ajmas

    That sounds like the arrogance that would help lose the next battle. As long as Creative is still making money they still have a running chance. If Apple took the same attitude that you do then it would mean that the iPod would be sunk in the next cycle. In the market place you always have to act as if you might lose the next battle and do everything to try to win it.



    I don't think that Apple is being arrogant (at least privately). You'll notice that every time someone just about gets close, they reshuffle (pardon any puns) the product mix, features, pricing to regain an advantage. Furthermore they have a lot of options they haven't yet excercised:



    - additional media formats...easy to do



    - subscription service...I'll bet Apple can easily do it when the recording companies actually approve it...did you know that the subscription services are currently operating without official contracts?



    - licensing Fairplay



    - Radio features



    What else?



    Note, Apple also has cost advantages over their competitors. So they can exercise "pricing options" too.
  • Reply 79 of 99
    Lol, since Creative boasted so much about their product, Apple can beat it with ease when they release their next iPod. Creative should have waited until Apple releases their next product, and then launch their own at the same time.
  • Reply 80 of 99
    Quote:

    Originally posted by SDW2001

    You're missing the point. I'm not saying the numbers are all that similar. It's the principle that's similar. As for the markets being different, I disagree. They are similar enough. Apple lost its battles in the consumer marketplace, not just the business world.



    But none of this really changes the fact that the iPod and Mac markets really are different to the degree that they aren't worth comparing. Look at all the things that Apple seemingly did to hobble the Mac early on. Hardware incompatibility. Software incompatibility. Low-key marketing/evangelism.



    That's all rectified when you extend the comparison to its logical lengths. The iPod can interface with the most common equipment out there (Mac and Windows; hardware compatibility) and play a variety of music files and can play music ripped from CDs (mp3s as software = widespread software compatibility.) And if you think Apple's marketing of the iPod is anything like its marketing of the Mac, then you need to read up on the subject. Apple is almost frightening aggressive about the mp3 player market.



    Others have pointed out the other differences. Apple has a major chunk of marketshare that they didn't have with the Mac and there are no image problems by consumers--quite the opposite, wouldn't you say?



    I think when you consider all these differences and the extent of those differences, it's hard to say it's a comparable situation.
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