“Steve Jobs just made me buy another iPod. And that ticks me off. The moment that Apple’s CEO announced the Mini, the slimmed-down, cheaper version of the company’s popular digital music player, I knew I’d be among the first in line to buy one when they shipped in February. In fact, I placed an order as soon as I had a chance to play with a demo,” Patrick Regnier writes for Money Magazine.
“Like the original iPod, the Mini packs a lot of power into a simple, clean package. Smaller than my wallet, the Mini has a 4GB hard drive that can store and play roughly 1,000 tunes. It has a more rugged design than its big brother and comes in five colors that aren’t white,” Regnier writes. “But aesthetic appeal isn’t the real reason I plunked down $250. I bought because I’m locked into Apple.”
“No one advertises this, but when you choose a digital music player, you’re also choosing sides in a format war that reminds me of eight-track vs. cassette or Betamax vs. VHS. Any player can play MP3 files, the format most often used to convert CDs to digital form. It’s when you start buying music online that things get tricky. Apple’s Music Store sells songs in a format called AAC, wrapped in a copy-protection code called FairPlay. The only portable device that can play these files is the iPod,” Regnier writes.
Regnier writes, “Memo to Mr. Jobs: Keep your techies working late to stay ahead of the curve. I’ve spent nearly a grand on your digital music revolution. If you make me regret it, you’ve lost a customer for life.”
Full article here.