Monday, May 15, 2006

Shaking In His Boots?

Not likely. Steve Jobs is probably snickering to himself right now. Like there isn't anything new in the pipeline for the iPod and iTunes. Sheesh!
Aiming for iPod / Microsoft, MTV to take on digital music leader Apple: "For the first time, Microsoft has led a coordinated effort so that the Windows Media Player, the Urge music store and the latest MP3 players by iRiver, Samsung and Creative Zen were largely designed together.

In effect, Microsoft and team are trying to mimic iPod and iTunes so that all the pieces fit together better and make it easier to use.

'Apple's model of a complete ecosystem -- the content and devices all working together harmoniously -- is the key to their success,' said Tim Bajarin of Creative Strategies. 'What Microsoft is trying to do is create something similar.'

Up to now, no one has been able to knock Apple off its throne. Despite competition from a slew of MP3 devices and new cell phones that play digital music, the iPod's share of the market has steadily grown, from 26 percent of the MP3 player market in 2003 to 56 percent in 2004 to 73 percent in 2005, according to the NPD Group. For the first three months of the year, it held nearly 80 percent of the MP3 player market.

'If you don't want an iPod, the alternatives have gotten more attractive,' said Ross Rubin, an analyst with NPD Group. 'But Apple has established a brand now and has such great distribution that I'm not sure if (the newest MP3 players are) going to be compelling enough to drive a lot of market share shift.'

Nevertheless, Microsoft says its new media player and MTV's music service could challenge iTunes.

'It's significantly better' than iTunes, said Geoff Harris, product unit manager of Windows Media Player. 'The player experience (such as its library management system) is just better than some of the stuff iTunes does.'"
Mimicry is the best form of flattery. Have you ever wondered about the Apple logo? That bite of the apple means something and it isn't good for Microsoft. Keep chasing.

iTunes will improve faster than they can keep up. It has taken this long for them to think of a coordinated effort. Duh! What about the video? Downloading certain shows has eliminated the need for cable. I pay for what I want, not stuff I don't care about. 24 looked great and so did Battlestar Galactica. I'll download the West Wing finale later on today and mom and I will watch it tonight. She had her hours cut, again.

Great boss she has. He calls her at work to wish her a happy Mother's Day and then tells her he no longer needs her on Mondays. Starting today. Isn't that nice? As soon as I can afford to get her out of there, I will. Then I might find a nice lawyer regarding the lack of breaks and lunch periods in an eight hour period for the last 6 years. Keep him busy at least, but we all know it is illegal.

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