Cramer’s Mad Money: Microsoft’s Zune is pathetic; Vista may cause people to turn to Apple Mac

“Microsoft just took an aim at Apple with its Zune music player, but Apple is still the leader of portable music, Jim Cramer told viewers of his ‘Mad Money’ TV show Wednesday,” TheStreet.com reports.

“First of all, compared to Apple’s iPod product, the Zune is too big and bulky, he said. And second, it comes in three colors, one of which is brown, a hue that is not likely to be popular among the younger set,” TheStreet.com reports. “Reason No. 3 why Cramer believes the Zune is likely to fail is that its music store is not good compared to iTunes, which is easy to use.”

“He said he finds the Zune, which doesn’t even have an original design, ‘pathetic.’ Moreover, the rankings for the product, which just debuted Tuesday, are much lower than expected,” TheStreet.com reports. “However, none of this is to say Cramer doesn’t like Microsoft, because he does. He said he believes the company has done well and people should like it because of its new Vista operating system, not because of the Zune. However, it is no competition for the iPod, Cramer said. The iPod is just one reason among many to own Apple. ‘Its laptops are very popular with the college generation,’ he said. ‘When you buy a Mac, you are buying a beautiful, easy-to-use machine.'”

“Also, when Microsoft launches Vista, people might get frustrated with having to update their systems and turn to Apple. In the end, ‘Apple is an iPod story,’ which is never-ending, he said. Plus, it has ‘a ton of financial flexibility,’ which could translate to buybacks and dividends in the future. ‘It could go to $100 by the end of the year,’ Cramer said. ‘Apple is invincible thus far.’ Apple closed at $84.05 on Wednesday.”

Full article here.
Apple is much more than just an iPod story – however beautiful that story might be – the Mac and Mac OS X are taking share from Windows as you read this sentence. Of course, there’s also Apple’s iTunes Store, with the looming ‘iTV,’ the ‘iPhone,’ Mac OS X Leopard, Apple’s growing software products, Apple Retail Stores, and only-Jobs-knows what else to come. Otherwise, Cramer’s got it right. One question: Do you see Apple shares at $100 by the end of this year?

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51 Comments

  1. Don’t be so quick to dismiss the Zune. Ars Technical just gave a GREAT review of the Zune, and it does have a much better & much prettier interface than the iPod. It also has a built-in FM Radio, which is crucial for people who want to listen to the closed-circuit televisions at the gym & tune into their favorite radio shows. The Zune kicks the iPod’s ass on many different levels.

    ——————-

    Better interface? Highly debatable, but let’s look at some facts that are not debatable about the Zune.

    1. It is heavier
    2. It is thicker
    3. It doesn’t have a click wheel
    4. You can’t buy tv shows for it
    5. You can’t buy movies for it
    6. You can’t buy games for it
    7. You can’t buy audiobooks for it
    8. You can’t download podcasts to it.
    9. You can’t sync your address book contacts to it.
    10. There are not 3000 available accessories for it.
    11. There is not native connectivity offered in 70% of new automobilles.
    12. Minimum Zune Marketplace purchase costs $5 for 400 points and 5 of those points are wasted.

    I’m sure there are plenty more reasons… These are the first 12 that come to mind.

  2. It’s impossible for the Zune to have a “better” interface when it doesn’t even have the touch wheel. The touch wheel is a big and probably most significant part of the interface. Anyone that looks at a contrived MS flashy graphic and equates that to having a “better” interface does not understand “interface”.

  3. If it’s anything like last year, it will be to 120 by mid- January. Then they released earnings for their best quarter in history and the stock tanked for 6 months until people realized – uh. yeah, we’re serious.
    So now we’re back to that mid-January level on a VERY solid footing, with a lower P/E, more cash, a holiday season ahead of us, a lame competitor, and, very possibly, a product on deck that will revolutionize the American electronics industry and the way we communicate and use our data.

    If I had another DIME… it would be in there. ^_^

    -c

    MW: ‘anyone’ (have a dime?)

  4. You might not agree but I think MDN and readers missed the point of the statement: “Apple is an iPod story”

    I read that as saying that Apple in ALL its business is LIKE the iPod story.

    ie the iPod is representative of how good Apple is in ALL that it does.

    So, if I explain myself well enough, this is an extreme compliment to Apple and watch out for Mac stealing many future Vista sales…and, Apple IS never ending, despite Microsofts reputation for staying power, it’s story willl likely end long before Apple’s, just as Apple started well before Miicrosoft.

  5. “Apple is the ipod company, they will never be #1 with computers or an OS.”

    Actually, Gartner just declared Apple #1 vendor in Education in Western Europe for the whole year 2006. Apple is as well #1 in laptop sales in Education.

    So it pretty much depends on what you do mean by ‘never be #1’.

  6. Apple doesn’t need to be #1 for either OS or hardware. since they exclusively make and sell both they’re earning double bubble plus they have far healthier margins across the board than the competition at large. All the other hardware vendors are competing amongst each other for new sales and market growth, Apple just have to pick them off here and there from every other company and by and large once they have them they keep them. How many windows users are loyal to a particular brand?

  7. FM radio is not crucial for woking out at the gym.

    I have never been to a gym where I needed anything other than a pair of headphones. Each machine has controls allowing to to change channel/volume.

    Apple knows that iPods are used for working out and have provided a stopwatch/lap counter, Nike+ system to help. If FM radio were crucial to the experience or if all gyms used the same system, radio would be integrated and not just an add-on as it is now.

  8. It is possible for the ZUNE to be a big seller…. there are a lot of idiots out there!

    Gees, most of them use windows and think they are getting a good deal!

    Mediocrity replicates itself with each generation. My quote. You can use it.

  9. “macromancer

    They never were #1. There’s this common misconception that Apple once ruled the PC world like MS has come to, and its just not true. Apple at its peak had 15% of the US market maybe.”

    You need to go back before the Mac. Many people have forgotten about the Apple II computer. Back in 1977 and many years after, it was the home computer to have.
    The IBM PC did not exist yet.
    So yes Apple has been number one, but not with the Mac.

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