Report: Microsoft, SanDisk overstate accessory support

“Following recent, separate announcements by SanDisk and Microsoft that certain prominent iPod accessory makers would be producing accessories for their iPod competitors Sansa and Zune, iLounge has confirmed that two of the iPod’s top supporters were listed as SanDisk or Microsoft development partners without having actually agreed to develop any accessories,” Jeremy Horwitz reports for iLounge.

Full article here.


  1. I hope that Apple is not leaning on these or other accessory makers in the manner that MS would do with partners. I want Apple to play fair. Besides, the iPod is so much better they would not need to sink to MS’ level.

  2. “Still, this begs the question, what were Microsoft’s and Sandisk’s motives to make a false “anoouncement”?”

    Ummm…maybe sales? Don’t forget that the first buyers of almost every product is the wholesaler/retailer. If they don’t think that they can sell the product to a consumer, they won’t buy it. These various annoucements are a way to say to the retailers that they can probably sell the product. Personally, I doubt they will sell.

  3. It is interesting to see all this talk about add-on products that are still vaporware… for a product that is VAPORWARE!!!

    Zune does not exist yet. It’s just images and hype, in the lofty hopes of slowing iPod sales (good luck with all that Ballmer).

    And of course there is no price for the product either. Apple has screwed MS execs big-time with the new iPod video price points, and now they are scrambling. (Sweet move Steve). They did not see this coming – at all – and thus had no $299 price point to announce, because if they did, MS would have fun selling those 17 Zune’s this year… MS never wins selling premium-priced products.

    Finally, there was no release date. Again we see MS stumbling around in the dark.

    What this ammounted to was a “sneak preview” and not a true launch, not even close.

    Does this mean MS will have another gathering to announce price and launch dates? Obviously not, since this “was” the launch right? Well, it was going to be… Again, Steve Jobs and Co. blew them away with not releasing the full-screen iPod – which we all know will arrive at MWSF, further blunting Zune for another year.
    Whether the full-screen iPod is having issues, or was strategically delayed makes no difference. The point is that the rev to the 5 G iPod with lower price point is a perfect move for Zune to try and take on.

    Zune will not compete to well with a rev’d 5G iPod and iTunes 7, and in four months will be blown away by the new full-screen version. Brilliant strategic play Apple.

  4. Very good post Steven. So true…

    Had apple released the vPod, Microsoft could have arguably pitted itself against that premium brand… an won on pricepoint.

    now… it can only pit itself on a similarly or less-expensive competitor.

  5. Jackson –

    Indeed, Apple is very likely to move back to the $299 price point with the full-screen iPod HD. (I will assume it will hold HD as the resolution will be 720 x 400), and iTunes may put the download sexiness in overdrive with HD movie downloads, putting even more heat on existing physical DVD products – and thus more pressure on hold-out studio’s to join in.

    In order to push HD into an iPod the low-end hard drive will need to move to at least 40 GB, and the screen cost will also dent Apple, so very little chance of a $249 entry point.

    Many will still ask “Where is the iPhone?” But Apple is great at building demand for a non-existen product, while still selling existing technology. This will be the perfect example of that.

    The media and Wall St. like to tell Apple when “something” should launch, but Apple’s marketing team is great at dictating when and how a product, will emerge.

    Steve and Co. are great at having everyone look at what’s in their right hand, when they are either weak with product in their left, or need to stretch an existing market a bit longer to completely maximize sales and margins from it.

    Back to iTV and the upcoming iPod HD. Apple will heavily push the iTV solution, and it will be a seamless and easy way to do iTunes anything on the TV/Stereo systems, but the low-hanging-fruit option (using the iPod HD as a playback device) is still there, and this double connect to the living-room is another pressure point on studio’s as it will aid in ringing in more movie sales.

    In fact, I just bought a universal dock today to do this very thing with my existing 5G iPod. I shall see how viable this iTunes movie experience is…

    Open Question: When will Apple be able to deliver a rental service and will it incorporate a bittorrent-like solution to keep the rental costs low (by eliminating bandwidth costs)? This is a key solution in my mind for using the iTunes service for movies, as I’m not a big fan of buying movies I watch once, may be twice if it’s really good…

  6. Tommy Boy –

    Rest assured, Apple did not give Creative the right to use the Dock Connector.

    Creative joined the Made for iPod program which means that Creative made make 3rd party accessories for the ipod (think speakers, chargers, etc) and Apple get’s 10% of profits.

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