Microsoft: ‘iPod killer’ reports based on ‘speculation and rumors’

“Microsoft has said reports that the company is planning an MP3 player to rival the iPod are based on ‘speculation and rumours,'” The BBC reports.

“Unnamed music industry executives have told the New York Times that they have received briefings about the product,” The Beeb reports. “The iPod rival would have wireless internet capabilities to download music without a PC, said the report.”

“Earlier this year reports that Microsoft was developing a rival to iPod proved inaccurate. The firm was developing a new handheld computer platform technology which was then licensed to third-party companies to build,” The Beeb reports. “Nate Elliott, digital home analyst at Jupiter Research, said that if Microsoft were planning an MP3 player it would be because of ‘frustration.’ ‘Microsoft and its partners have made no significant headway into Apple’s dominance of the market.'”

“Mr Elliott said Microsoft would have a challenge breaking Apple’s hold on the market. ‘Apple has a fantastic product. Other mp3 manufacturers have added features to their products but the vast majority of consumers have voted with their wallet and bought iPods. The extra features do not seem to matter to them.’ Mr Elliott said Microsoft was entering the market before it was too late,” The Beeb reports.

Full article here.

According to C. Max Magee of Indie Research, and Microsoft “plan is risky for a number of reasons. First and foremost, no one has successfully taken on the iPod, which has become one of the most recognizable and iconic brands in recent memory. Microsoft would have to offer an alternative that was compelling on many fronts for it to make a significant dent in the iPod’s market share.”

“The move is also risky because it will put Microsoft in competition with some of its customers. Samsung, Sony, Creative Technology, and others use Microsoft software in their music and video players,” Magee explains. “Microsoft certainly faces an uphill battle if it’s going to knock Apple off its perch, especially when one considers that Microsoft hasn’t been terribly successful at breaking into new markets that stray from its core software products… It’s never a good idea to dismiss the plans of a company as ambitious and powerful as Microsoft, but for all the reasons mentioned above, it’s hard to imagine that Microsoft will be able to end the iPod’s dominance.”

Full article here.

“If even the likes of Sony are unable to hinder the iPod’s market domiance, Microsoft is going to do so with what could very well be a me-too machine? Microsoft has been in the handheld media game for a very long time now with little to show for it,” Tony Smith writes for The Register. “The Bloomberg report talks about MS’ gadget having better picture quality than the iPod’s, but again, that’s easy to do – and equally easy for Apple to top in a future incarnation of the iPod, such as the video-oriented model once rumoured to have been scheduled for an April 2006 debut but now expected later this year at the earliest. The same goes for the addition of other neat-sounding features, such as Wi-Fi support – if Microsoft offers them, Apple will too, soon enough.”

Full article here.

Red Herring reports, “‘The portable video market has been dealing with suboptimal products for a long time,’ said Roger Kay, founder of the technology research firm Endpoint Technologies Associates. ‘Microsoft sees the problem and they probably see an opportunity to make their market entry… This will not be the first time that Microsoft trails Apple into the market. It took Microsoft a decade after the introduction of the Mac to market Windows, so following Apple into the MP3 market by five years is not that surprising.'”

Full article here.

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Related articles:
Can Microsoft hit a fast moving target? Apple likely to debut wireless iPod this year – July 07, 2006
Analysts: Microsoft faces uphill fight to supplant Apple’s iPod+iTunes market dominance – July 07, 2006
Microsoft plans to convert iPod users by replacing iTMS songs with free WMA format songs – July 06, 2006
Microsoft to release wireless ‘iPod killer’ by Christmas to challenge Apple – July 05, 2006
Analyst Wu: Microsoft unlikely to dethrone Apple iPod+iTunes – June 21, 2006
Microsoft preps iPod+iTunes killer – June 19, 2006
Report: Microsoft readying Apple iPod+iTunes rival – June 16, 2006
Microsoft: No iPod killer planned – June 05, 2006
Microsoft, Toshiba, DoCoMo, Victor to develop Japan iPod+iTunes killer – June 02, 2006

Patent application shows iPod capable of live wireless video conferencing – June 13, 2006
Apple patent application filed for wireless iPod+iTunes distribution – May 04, 2006
Generator Research: Apple to Ship $4.2bn in Wireless iPods (WiPods) by 2010 – March 14, 2006
Ready for your wireless Apple iPod? – February 09, 2006
Wireless iPod? CSR and PortalPlayer to bring wireless connectivity to personal media players – February 08, 2006
Wireless Apple iPods coming in 2006? – December 09, 2005

More blood on Apple iTunes Music Store’s play button: MyCokeMusic is dead – June 20, 2006
More blood on Apple iPod’s Click Wheel: iRiver gives up on digital media player market – May 23, 2006
More blood on Apple iPod’s Click Wheel: Sony’s Walkman Bean is cooked – February 13, 2006
More blood on Apple iPod’s Click Wheel: Dell dumps ‘DJ’ hard-drive MP3 player line – February 04, 2006
More blood on Apple iPod’s Click Wheel: iRiver pulling out of Europe? – February 01, 2006
More blood on Apple iPod’s Click Wheel: Thomson gives up on MP3 player, CE markets – December 12, 2005
More blood on Apple iPod’s Click Wheel: BenQ withdraws from MP3 player markets – November 28, 2005
More blood on Apple iPod’s Click Wheel: Olympus halts production of portable digital music players – November 09, 2005
More blood on Apple iPod’s Click Wheel: Rio is dead – August 26, 2005
Apple’s iPod has blood on its Click Wheel: Virgin Electronics is dead – March 08, 2005
Apple’s iTunes Music Store has blood on its play button: is dead – March 28, 2004


  1. “Microsoft has said reports that the company is planning an MP3 player to rival the iPod are based on ‘speculation and rumours'”

    Exactly right. Microsoft don’t expect it to rival the iPod.

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