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iPod Hardware and Accessories All iPod hardware discussions.

Microsoft's music weeds


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Nightblade
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Yesterday, Microsoft released its Portable Media Center, a device built to destroy the iPod. Most people have heard about it for a while, actually, but it got released yesterday. Its name comes from the operating system "Windows XP: Media Center", a program that allows you to watch TV, movies, DVDs, music, etc. Few people have that operating system, due to its high price and the fact that there are always replacements for it, a lot of which don't even involve a computer (like a TV). But now that technology has gone portable. It's much bigger than an iPod, and more costly, which are disadvantages, but considering it can play TV shows, movies, and photos (as well as music, with about as much storage space as an iPod), this could pose a problem to Apple. Hmm, Microsoft is once again copying Apple's ideas, making changes (sometimes for the better, actually), and then selling it to beat Apple. Here are a few articles about this:

http://mlb.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/mlb/ne..._mlb&fext=.jsp

http://www.vnunet.com/news/1157772

http://www.pcworld.com/news/article/0,aid,117653,00.asp

But this isn't all they've done recently. This is just half of how they're once again not going to let Apple have any market (face it, if Apple kept the Newton going, Microsoft would've stolen that idea too). Here's the other half....

TWO days ago, Microsoft released MSN Music, a competitor to the iTunes Music Store. It's not as good as the iTunes Music Store...yet. Right now, it's only got 500,000 songs, but soon they'll have 1,000,000. In addition, they've got GREAT search features. But then again, seeing as how Apple invented Spotlight, the iTunes Music Store should get better search features eventually too. Anyway, look at this article:

http://www.reuters.co.uk/newsPackage...0&section=news

Or this one:

http://abcnews.go.com/wire/SciTech/r...40903_471.html




And to top it all off, neither of these services are Mac-compatible or iPod-compatible! They steal Apple's ideas, make them more appealing, and then lock Mac-users out of the fun! But, maybe they'll eventually be Mac-compatible. I mean, from what I recall, both the iTunes Music Store and the iPod weren't PC-compatible when they were released, but eventually they became PC-compatible. Hopefully the same thing will happen to Microsoft's two new music weeds, but only time will tell. Personally, I think MSN Music will be the more successful of the two. Anyway, what do people think of this?
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technologist

 
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I haven't looked at the MS Music store yet (I think my PC at work is still running WMP 7...but it's got iTunes 4.6!)

What kind of search features does it offer? How are they better than the ones in the iTunes store? :confused:

As for video...people at Apple have stated that they don't intend to produce a video-ipod type device. They say the small screen would limit such a device's appeal, while a music player with good headphones sounds as good as a much larger audio system.

On the other hand, movie studios said that small screens would make people avoid TVs back in the day. :rolleyes:
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witeshark

 
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That player can't compare to an iPod. IMO no one can make an online music store better than iTunes
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Nightblade
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Yeah, that's why I was saying that MSN Music would the more succesful of these two products. I remember when I first heard about PMCs, a lot of people posted viable comments on different message boards about many disadvantages to these things to the iPod. The main two disadvantages are the size and the price (both are greater than those of the iPod). Plus, a lot of people don't feel like watching a movie, TV show, or photos when they're on the go. Music, of course, is different issue, since people don't usually have to keep their sense of hearing as alert as their sense of sight when they're moving. Few people even know about XP Media Center, so it's possible no one will give two craps about Portable Media Centers. The iPod is definitely one of Apple's best-selling products ever. There are now more ads for it then any other Apple product, and EVERYONE knows about them, so the only people who are disenfranchised are people without computers and PC users without internet access (because they need to download iTunes).


And as for MSN Music? Well, from what I've heard so far, none of the iTunes Music Store's competitors have created a superior product, but Microsoft is definitely up to the challenge, and they seem very determined. I mean, I actually took a look at MSN Music (I'm surprised I didn't run into any trouble, considering it supposedly shouldn't work on this OS), and it actually had songs that the iTunes Music Store didn't (even though the total number of songs is still half of that on the iTunes Music Store). Actually, I didn't really find these songs available by themselves, but rather the albums they come on. Supposedly you can also get full albums on MSN Music too. There is one disadvantage to MSN Music, and that is that certain songs (long ones mainly) cost more than 99, while ALL of the songs at the iTunes Music Store are 99.

Is anyone starting to see a pattern here? Microsoft's products are more expensive than Apple's! The operating systems, the portable media players, and now the music services. Most people complain Apple is expensive, but that's only compared to hardware and processor companies, not Microsoft. For the most part, Microsoft's products are more expensive than Apple's (granted Office is cheaper than Production Suite and etc., but media production programs are always very expensive). It's just that they don't make PCs or processors, but if they did, it is possible they would be quite expensive.
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mig.gentry

 
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It all looks like abit of healthy competition to me, which in my experience can only be good, iTunes won't let me register(no idea why) so more choice is only to my benefit(assuming it makes it to mac at some point).
Although most of the movies i download aren't the kind of stuff i'd be watching on the train
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Matt
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The pressure is on for Apple. I don't think the Media Centres are much of a challenge, but the MSN music store is.

Competition is healthy, but too much pressure can be fatal. :eek:
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Matt
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Also, if you read it, they combined their music store with the soon coming Windows Media player 10, LIKE APPLE DID WITH ITUNES! Microsoft can't do anything for themselves.
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