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MacRumors
Dec 3, 2003, 12:48 AM
CBS MarketWatch (http://cbs.marketwatch.com/news/story.asp?guid=%7BD5A94D5A-3AFC-4450-B0E2-CA51E3D636AB%7D) notes that HP will be entering the music-download/player arena in January 2004 with its own version of a digital music player and service.

The new offerings will be shown at the Consumer Electronics Show (http://www.cesweb.org/) which runs Jan 8-11, 2004 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

DTphonehome
Dec 3, 2003, 12:55 AM
Also, I will soon announce plans for my own digital music player. Stay tuned.

--DT

Archmage
Dec 3, 2003, 12:55 AM
Hasn't anybody ever heard of market saturation?

DamnDJ
Dec 3, 2003, 12:57 AM
..because the world just can't have enough online music stores.

*sigh*

Who's next? 7-11? Love the CDs they sell at the counter.

JohnGillilan
Dec 3, 2003, 01:00 AM
worst download service ever

adamberti
Dec 3, 2003, 01:20 AM
it's the .com all over again with music downloads. Everyone will have their own store and in a year or so it'll be down to one or two.

Then Apple will make a video service, and it'll happen all over again.

ryaxnb
Dec 3, 2003, 01:29 AM
Originally posted by adamberti
it's the .com all over again with music downloads. Everyone will have their own store and in a year or so it'll be down to one or two.

Then Apple will make a video service, and it'll happen all over again.
so true.

ryaxnb
Dec 3, 2003, 01:32 AM
News: ABC Chinese Restaurant* will be opening it's own music store soon! And will partner with KFC for the player!
*That is a real restaurant name
This is of course a joke.

Sabenth
Dec 3, 2003, 01:34 AM
have to agree .. like lemings this lot

gekko513
Dec 3, 2003, 01:43 AM
My guess is that HP will do better than the other iTMS/iPod competitors.

winmacguy
Dec 3, 2003, 01:58 AM
Originally posted by gekko513
My guess is that HP will do better than the other iTMS/iPod competitors.
True but they still wont have the best MP3 player on the market and will also have to achieve a high rate of market penetration over a short space of time to do any good. It will be interesting to see who is the last player standing in this race for world domination.

m4rc
Dec 3, 2003, 02:00 AM
I think it's good. Watch them all struggle like mad, then crah and burn. Apple will be referred to constantly as the company who did it right. Also, this will get more people into music downloads and MP3 players, as there will be more advertising money floating around. Then, when all these new consumers start to suffer from poor service levels and lack of quality downloads, they will go looking for an alternative. It's a little bit like the internet early days. When you first get the opportunity to go online, you just follow the crowd using the browser, search engines and sites suggested. Once online, people start to think for themselves and want better service, so they find a new browser, search engine etc.

More competition is a good thing, especially as Apple genuinely makes a quality MP3 player and runs a top class download service, and it is always nice that people feel the need to imitate, Apple must be doing it right!

Marc

mj_1903
Dec 3, 2003, 02:07 AM
My pet budgie is due to announce an online venture attempting to sell a portable .ogg player and recordings of him singing music online.

Oh wait, did I just hear crickets chirping? Why is this news? We all know that every man and his dog will attempt to replicate Apple's success because its money. Sadly every man and his dog isn't Apple and lots of customers aint going to be too happy in a few years.

QCassidy352
Dec 3, 2003, 02:10 AM
does anyone honestly think they can make money with this many people in the market? What's gonna make any one of these services so good that people will choose it over another? They are all the same, and there probably isn't enough demand for more than one or two. If a company had something specific to add, or a clever improvement... but this is just silly.

Especially for these companies who are gonna be late to market. How will they motivate people to leave the download service that they already have? There would have to be something amazing about the new service... like half the price. But that's not gonna happen.

Maybe the thing here is not so much that any company expects to make money, but that they are all willing to take a loss so that the others don't make money/ dominate the market. Or maybe they're all just idiots. Or maybe both.

winmacguy
Dec 3, 2003, 02:23 AM
Originally posted by marccarter
I think it's good. Watch them all struggle like mad, then crah and burn. Apple will be referred to constantly as the company who did it right. Also, this will get more people into music downloads and MP3 players, as there will be more advertising money floating around. Then, when all these new consumers start to suffer from poor service levels and lack of quality downloads, they will go looking for an alternative. It's a little bit like the internet early days. When you first get the opportunity to go online, you just follow the crowd using the browser, search engines and sites suggested. Once online, people start to think for themselves and want better service, so they find a new browser, search engine etc.

More competition is a good thing, especially as Apple genuinely makes a quality MP3 player and runs a top class download service, and it is always nice that people feel the need to imitate, Apple must be doing it right!

Marc
If there are no other orignal players out there in the market and evrybody can only knock Apple then I think for sure that Apple has got it right and that imitation is in this instance the greatest compliment the competition can give to Apple ( As ironic as that might sound)

ShadowHunter
Dec 3, 2003, 02:38 AM
Excellent, more lambs to the slaughter for us to feast on.

More music download ventures = more failures = more iTunes converts = money for Apple = better for us :D

winmacguy
Dec 3, 2003, 02:48 AM
Originally posted by ShadowHunter
Excellent, more lambs to the slaughter for us to feast on.

More music download ventures = more failures = more iTunes converts = money for Apple = better for us :D
you hit the nail on the head :)
I agree that it is interesting though how many people who knock Macs have PC s that crash including their work PCs.

Analog Kid
Dec 3, 2003, 02:56 AM
Yeah, this is getting kinda funny... HP puts out a big press release and the world responds with a big "whatever...". :D

Just gonna be another half-assed WMA file server paired with some HP toy.

HP probably thinks it has an advantage because they can bundle the portal with their machines-- until MS boosts their license fees in retribution. Maybe they're going to build their player around Itanium to boost volumes of the chip?

We should start a pool on which will collapse first. All these companies fighting for, what, 100,000 users?

At least HP and Compaq merged already-- that's one less store...
:rolleyes:

displaced
Dec 3, 2003, 03:22 AM
I wonder how this will all pan out once acquisitions and mergers start happening?

From the looks of things, all these music stores will be dividing the PC market, and I dare say some of the larger players (Microsoft? Dell?) might start looking at buying up their rivals, especially if they've got agreements with record labels that the buyer might want for themselves.

Apple have some advantages -- massive installed base of iPod users, brand awareness, excellent service and the benefit of the Macintosh userbase, which looks set to be excluded from the PC world's online stores (err... boo... hoo).

PC users' inertia might work in Apple's favour so long as manufacturers keep releasing their own stores. They'll just use the default installed store - be it HP or Dell, thus dividing the market. This'll help head-off the threat of Apple being forced to go one-on-one against a hegemonising Microsoft Music Store.

Just some random thoughts....

iMeowbot
Dec 3, 2003, 03:34 AM
Originally posted by Archmage
Hasn't anybody ever heard of market saturation?

Maybe this one will be programmable in RPL and have a voltmeter accessory.

emanu
Dec 3, 2003, 03:37 AM
Originally posted by marccarter
I think it's good. Watch them all struggle like mad, then crah and burn. Apple will be referred to constantly as the company who did it right. Once online, people start to think for themselves and want better service, so they find a new browser, search engine etc.
Marc

I don't think so. WMP is standard on PC boxes not iTunes or Quicktime. PC users allways use what they have and don't even look at the alternative solutions. It's the same thing once again. PC users already think WMP is a standard not AAC.
With HP joining the game, it's only reinforce this sentiment.

wsteineker
Dec 3, 2003, 03:39 AM
I wouldn't count HP out just yet. I work for a major retailer, and I can tell you that their machines are both terribly popular and fairly well built (compared to the rest of the PC lot). They have huge brand recognition and a fairly large installed user base. Couple that with an HP branded player and you've got a recipe for solid performance. Let's all remember that we're not talking about eMachines or Toshiba here. HP is a legitimate player in the home PC market, and they'll be tough competition. That being said, I'll be shocked if they manage to come up with a solution that's half as elegant at iPod+iTunes. Still, they've got a vastly higher market penetration level than most other companies. This should be terribly interesting. :)

winmacguy
Dec 3, 2003, 03:58 AM
Originally posted by displaced
I wonder how this will all pan out once acquisitions and mergers start happening?

From the looks of things, all these music stores will be dividing the PC market, and I dare say some of the larger players (Microsoft? Dell?) might start looking at buying up their rivals, especially if they've got agreements with record labels that the buyer might want for themselves.

Apple have some advantages -- massive installed base of iPod users, brand awareness, excellent service and the benefit of the Macintosh userbase, which looks set to be excluded from the PC world's online stores (err... boo... hoo).

PC users' inertia might work in Apple's favour so long as manufacturers keep releasing their own stores. They'll just use the default installed store - be it HP or Dell, thus dividing the market. This'll help head-off the threat of Apple being forced to go one-on-one against a hegemonising Microsoft Music Store.

Just some random thoughts....
Well I could see Microsoft entering the market with their service because they have got loads of cash and can afford to lose some although it wont gain them any extra market share as they only do software Microsoft would also be entering the market just because they can andf maybe to eliminate some of the competition because Microsoft has the most money

HP will get a similar benefit to Apple in that they are going to bring out their own MP3 Player so they will be using the music downloads to encourage sales it just remains to be seen how they compare to Apple and the iPod, remembering that Apple also plans on introducing new customers to its operating system and hardware which would mean more larger sales in the long term and a new fan base.

The rest are just hopeing to make money from legalised music downloading and to try and build a user base...and we all know that it is not and never will be a profit making exercise.

SiliconAddict
Dec 3, 2003, 04:27 AM
Originally posted by adamberti
it's the .com all over again with music downloads.

HEH. I was thinking the exact same thing. But this was to be expected. Dell and HP are fierce rivals. There isn't any market one company ventures into where the other doesn't follow. 2004\2005 is going to be known as the year/s of the music .com bust. The market can't support more then a hand full of music companies. My personal bet on the survivors is iTMS and Music Match (=Dell) Both offer fairly robust services and players. I'm wondering if HP may go with a rebranded Napster service similar to how Dell went with a rebranded Music Match service.
I'm not so much interested in the music store aspect as the fact that another, again possibly cheaper, iPod competitor may be entering the market. Apple can't get its next gen of iPod out soon enough. Hopefully this will happen in January along with a cheap 5-10GB iPod.

Dahl
Dec 3, 2003, 04:33 AM
Originally posted by DTphonehome
Also, I will soon announce plans for my own digital music player. Stay tuned.

--DT
He he...
Just what I was thinking.
I would like to start an online music store, I'll call it "iSounds" and it will only sell music by Mike Patton, Zappa, Zorn, Blur, Sonic Youth and Pixies.
:D

billyboy
Dec 3, 2003, 05:06 AM
Oh what a mediocre, restricted world we still live in.

Apple spent months and months developing a brand new integrated approach to selling/downloading/playing/managing music. They set a standard that, apart from some tweaking, is precisely what the customer needs in the current state of music distribution, and shows a shaft of light to the music industry. Then what happens?

HP, MS et al phone up the big five, who arrange a whole licencing deal over a cup of coffee without any competitive disadvantage for coming along late. Then HP and MS monopolists use their financial muscle to buy up some 3rd party hick town mp3 player, and launch an Apple lookalike service that gives the consumer a mediocre service that works, but only just.



The innovative HPs and MS probably just about understand that the music store is purely a sexy marketing tool. They definitely understand that customers in a homogenous grey world do stick with what they know. So they will chuck loads of mud at their existing huge customer base, know that much of it will stick, and believe that thats how they will keep going head to head with Apple before swamping them in grey.

Jobs says Apple excel because they love what they do. I hope Steve Jobs is smiling politely at the Big Five while he rapidly lays the foundation for sticking his finger up at them. If they could be the hub of a www of independent distributors, that would change the way the music industry worked and reward Apple and the consumer rather.At the moment, Apple are famous for the iPod and pioneering a neat new outlet for rip off Big Fives.

booshtukka
Dec 3, 2003, 05:34 AM
Originally posted by emanu
I don't think so. WMP is standard on PC boxes not iTunes or Quicktime. PC users allways use what they have and don't even look at the alternative solutions. It's the same thing once again. PC users already think WMP is a standard not AAC.
With HP joining the game, it's only reinforce this sentiment.

That's a bit strong. You're saying, with all the thousands of pc programs out there, all windows users use outlook express to collect their email? And none of them choose to use mp3 over wma?

Granted, UNEDUCATED pc users will never change. But to say "PC users always use what they have and don't even look at the alternative solutions" is a bit ignorant. It would make iTunes for the PC a bit redundant, wouldn't it?

ITR 81
Dec 3, 2003, 06:13 AM
If most people used WMP then why would most PC users and former PC users used WinAmp over WMP? Maybe because it was just better.

Yes, there will be some PC users that will just take whatever MS hands them but most won't if they find something better.

I believe after a yr or so the only 2 still in the music market will be Apple and MS.

I wonder how much money MS can lose before the bean counters start going after Gates?? I mean they lose money on every Xbox thats sold and now they will lose money for every track they sell. Not to mention all the money they are having to payback due to court loses.

Eric_Z
Dec 3, 2003, 06:29 AM
Sigh you know I used to really like HP once upon a time. Before they slashed there RND budget to something resembeling nothing, firering all there recearchers, cancelling there CPU projects including Alpha which is, whas, propably the best CPU architecture of all time. And decided to go with the oh so great(not) Itanum, killed (going to) HP-UX, alienated there big iron sever customers, merged with Compac and decided to go with that oh so rockin' Compac quality ( My father owns one of those running Win Xp, if you don't move the mouse during boot up, it'll crash, if you leave it alone for a couple of minutes, it crashes. Oh and did I mention that it allso generally crashes for no apparent reason at all?).

And that's just scimming at the top of HP's problems.
And no I'm not bitter at HP, with the exeption of that computer that my father uses, but then again I have my own Linux box so I'm not subjected to it's horrors.
I'm fully capable of thinking that they are a bunch of incopetent monceys to busy flinging faecial matter at each other to actually run a company, without being bitter.

So no I'm not worried at all over HP's announcement.

TorbX
Dec 3, 2003, 07:03 AM
MS, HP and DELL should start out in Europe. That would really **** up for Apple.

I HATE the fact that iTMS hasn't come here yet...

:(

synergy
Dec 3, 2003, 07:11 AM
Originally posted by TorbX
MS, HP and DELL should start out in Europe. That would really **** up for Apple.

I HATE the fact that iTMS hasn't come here yet...

:(

With the numerous licensing rights in each country not many yet have decided to do much of anything in Europe.

In fact Microsoft is trying some music download service in Europe but they are also getting sued for patent infringement:

http://www.infoworld.com/article/03/10/14/HNtiscali_1.html

Sol
Dec 3, 2003, 07:28 AM
Originally posted by TorbX
MS, HP and DELL should start out in Europe. That would really **** up for Apple.

I HATE the fact that iTMS hasn't come here yet...

:(

I think that Europe will get it at the same time as Australia, Asia and the rest of the world. If Apple was to going to do this in stages we would have seen at least an iTunes for Canada or Japan by now.

A HP music store would not be such a bad thing for iTunes. HP would be competing with Microsoft who would rather make its own music store the default in any future Windows installations. The two giants can fight amongst themselves for all the user cares. After all, iTunes is compatible with any PC running the current Windows and that is always an option.

The HP music player would also be a good thing for the 1.8" HD format. With more companies utilising those drives prices will come down and performance will increase. Of course iPods would still sell well if they remained at the same prices. Having said that, cheaper iPods would be welcomed universally.

Perhaps Apple should split the iPod into consumer and proffessional lines like it has with the Macs. Consumer versions should offer the same features as modern iterations and Proffessional should include things like built in media card readers, colour screens and AV inputs and outputs.

the_mole1314
Dec 3, 2003, 07:37 AM
I think this will be the next '.com buzz'. The media player market and music service market will crash in two years, and the only survivors will be iTunes and mabey Microsoft's.

TyleRomeo
Dec 3, 2003, 07:38 AM
OK how many iTunes Music Store copycats are there. This is getting rediculous

1.Buymusic.com
2.Napster
3.Dell
4.HP

how many others are there

aren't MTV, microsoft and sony going to come out with stores soon also.

Tyler

Photorun
Dec 3, 2003, 08:05 AM
This is sooo last spring!

Lanbrown
Dec 3, 2003, 08:20 AM
Originally posted by gekko513
My guess is that HP will do better than the other iTMS/iPod competitors.

Their service and support is lacking to the highest degree. If you are an enterprise customer, the service is good, of you are not and just a consumer, forget about it. HP also likes to use proprietary methods. The peecee companies should have gotten together and created one service. They each could have created their own client so each would have a different look. The backend would use a common framework. This would have allowed them to negotiate deals with label quicker. Each company would also be responsible for their front-end servers, bandwidth and player.

Shadey
Dec 3, 2003, 08:22 AM
Originally posted by JohnGillilan
worst download service ever

How insightful!

Amazing how you can have an opinion already! The service hasn't even been released. Lemme guess, Marty McFly told you, huh?

Lanbrown
Dec 3, 2003, 08:25 AM
Originally posted by marccarter
I think it's good. Watch them all struggle like mad, then crah and burn. Apple will be referred to constantly as the company who did it right. Also, this will get more people into music downloads and MP3 players, as there will be more advertising money floating around. Then, when all these new consumers start to suffer from poor service levels and lack of quality downloads, they will go looking for an alternative. It's a little bit like the internet early days. When you first get the opportunity to go online, you just follow the crowd using the browser, search engines and sites suggested. Once online, people start to think for themselves and want better service, so they find a new browser, search engine etc.

More competition is a good thing, especially as Apple genuinely makes a quality MP3 player and runs a top class download service, and it is always nice that people feel the need to imitate, Apple must be doing it right!

Marc

You have got to be joking. Most users use IE because its there, not because it's the best. The same can be said for WMP and Outhouse Express. There are people that type the name of the site they want to go to in a search engine. Lets say they wanted to get to www.microsoft.com. They will type that into a search engine and click on the first result that appears.

If customers suffered from the lack of support and poor quality of downloads, they will probably just decide not to participate in music downloads anymore. For one, if they bought a player that can only be used with one service, why would they try a different service and buy another player? If they spent a couple hundred dollars, they may not want to spend it again.

Quality competition is important, not just competition.

barryishnikov
Dec 3, 2003, 08:29 AM
Originally posted by Eric_Z
Sigh you know I used to really like HP once upon a time. Before they slashed there RND budget to something resembeling nothing, firering all there recearchers, cancelling there CPU projects including Alpha which is, whas, propably the best CPU architecture of all time. And decided to go with the oh so great(not) Itanum, killed (going to) HP-UX, alienated there big iron sever customers, merged with Compac and decided to go with that oh so rockin' Compac quality ( My father owns one of those running Win Xp, if you don't move the mouse during boot up, it'll crash, if you leave it alone for a couple of minutes, it crashes. Oh and did I mention that it allso generally crashes for no apparent reason at all?).

And that's just scimming at the top of HP's problems.
And no I'm not bitter at HP, with the exeption of that computer that my father uses, but then again I have my own Linux box so I'm not subjected to it's horrors.
I'm fully capable of thinking that they are a bunch of incopetent monceys to busy flinging faecial matter at each other to actually run a company, without being bitter.

So no I'm not worried at all over HP's announcement.

Wow. That's bitter. And a rather incorrect assessment of HP's internal R&D situation, not to mention its relationship to its "big iron" customers. I realize this is off topic, but I had to respond. I am a middle manager in R&D at HP. This person's personal experience with HP or Compaq PCs notwithstanding, HP made choices about the old DEC products (Alpha, Tru64, OpenVMS) to continue some and not continue others. R&D spending, while cut in some areas, has actually grown year-over-year to a huge proportion. And they continue to be successful in servers, especially at the high end.

Now, as for the music store announcement, the only thing I can add to what's already been said, is that you can count on HP staying in this market as long as its competition does (Dell). With MS entering the show, things will get real interesting. And then the shakeout will start. And, unfortunately, unless Apple makes a few more bold moves to secure its future as a premier music service and music player on *windows* then I'm afraid Apple will lose, even though they pioneered this market. Don't get me wrong, I love Apple products and the whole concept of Apple. But their history is wrought with bad marketing decisions that cost them a broader marketshare, even though they are the most innovative PC company in the world.

Shadey
Dec 3, 2003, 08:33 AM
Originally posted by barryishnikov
But their history is wrought with bad marketing decisions that cost them marketshare.

Best sentence I've read here in ages.

Lanbrown
Dec 3, 2003, 08:36 AM
Originally posted by Shadey
How insightful!

Amazing how you can have an opinion already! The service hasn't even been released. Lemme guess, Marty McFly told you, huh?

You have to look no further then this:
"An H-P (HPQ: news, chart, profile) spokeswoman confirmed reports that the No. 2 PC maker would have its version of a digital-music storefront up and running next month. The company intends on taking the wraps off of some of its digital-music offerings, including a music player, at the annual Consumer Electronics Show.

H-P would not give further details about the music store and player, saying the products' designs are still in the works."

Let's see, the design is still in the works and the CES is January 8-11. So roughly in one month, they will show their product and have their store up and running. I view a lot of bugs in the software and the product. They donít nearly have enough time to make sure everything is ironed out. They can't even get their All-in-One software to work on the peecee or Mac platforms. Oh, for the peecee side, if you want network support you have to pay for upgraded software. Even though the current software is buggy as can be. They say the download is too big. If that were case, then they would allow other software to be downloaded from their site that is even larger.

Lanbrown
Dec 3, 2003, 08:41 AM
Originally posted by Shadey
Best sentence I've read here in ages.

Like HP is not guilty of that? They bought their way to the number one computer maker spot and lost it. They used their money to overtake Dell. What did Dell do, they stepped up to the plate and fought back. I haven't seen HP trying to reclaim the spot or even making any headway in it.

SiliconAddict
Dec 3, 2003, 08:43 AM
Originally posted by TyleRomeo
OK how many iTunes Music Store copycats are there. This is getting rediculous

1.Buymusic.com
2.Napster
3.Dell
4.HP

how many others are there

aren't MTV, microsoft and sony going to come out with stores soon also.

Tyler

Not totally accurate....


1. Buymusic.com
2. Napster
3. Music Match
3a. Dell which is basically Music Match rebranded.
4. HP
5. Sony (Supposedly some time next year.)
6. Thought I heard some rumors of Best Buy making a go of the whole music store thing.
7. Microsoft (Supposedly some time next year.)

SiliconAddict
Dec 3, 2003, 08:53 AM
Originally posted by Lanbrown

Let's see, the design is still in the works and the CES is January 8-11. So roughly in one month, they will show their product and have their store up and running.

Yep and do you want to hazard a guess as to how close Apple was tweaking the code for Panther before it shipped. (Didnít they release a version of Panther to developers weeks before it went gold code?)
Oh and how often does Apple release full details of its plans before it goes live?

Arenít you being just a tad hypocritical?? :rolleyes: The music market is heating up along with the competition. Would you give the full details of your service to your competitors before its ready to go?


Never say sucks until it launches and until you try it out first hand.

Lanbrown
Dec 3, 2003, 09:06 AM
Originally posted by SiliconAddict
Yep and do you want to hazard a guess as to how close Apple was tweaking the code for Panther before it shipped. (Didnít they release a version of Panther to developers weeks before it went gold code?)
Oh and how often does Apple release full details of its plans before it goes live?

Arenít you being just a tad hypocritical?? :rolleyes: The music market is heating up along with the competition. Would you give the full details of your service to your competitors before its ready to go?


Never say sucks until it launches and until you try it out first hand.

What about hardware problems? They have no details on it as the designs are still in the works. Products need to be tested. Just ask Dell about its PDA and PPC 2003 fiasco.

If there is a hardware fault and they are already in the customer's hands, they have a huge problem. They are rushing it to market just to match Dell.

dguisinger
Dec 3, 2003, 09:11 AM
Originally posted by SiliconAddict
Not totally accurate....


1. Buymusic.com
2. Napster
3. Music Match
3a. Dell which is basically Music Match rebranded.
4. HP
5. Sony (Supposedly some time next year.)
6. Thought I heard some rumors of Best Buy making a go of the whole music store thing.
7. Microsoft (Supposedly some time next year.)

Don't forget Walmart

PretendPCuser
Dec 3, 2003, 09:11 AM
First. Your music store isn't going to be profitable. Can you handle that?

Your music player best be profitable.

You are a PC maker that is primarily competitive based on price. Meaning your profit margins are thinner than Apples. So. You had better be able to sell these things like hotcakes. Lord knows i'm not an economist, but if Apple's profit margin on the iPod is 50% and HPs is only 25%, you have to sell twice as many as Apple. (OK, maybe not twice as many, cause we all know HP isn't going to put that much R&D on it, other than stealing cues from Apple which may or may not warrant legal action from Apple.) I have no idea what their distribution channel is like, so i can't comment on that, also, cause i have no idea how that affects cost.

Who exactly are you trying to sell this to? It better be the wanna-be iPod owners and the me-too's cause the early adopters and cutting edgers all ready bought. And i don't think they are going to go backwards.

So, who else is going to be competing in the arena with you? Dell. Oops. Dell is going to beat you on volume, cut profit margins so thin, you'd best think of ways to differentiate yourself.

There you have it HP, free consultation. Well, not exactly free. You can buy me an iPod for my troubles. :cool:

peezout!

morkintosh
Dec 3, 2003, 09:14 AM
Originally posted by mj_1903

We all know that every man and his dog will attempt to replicate Apple's success because its money.
Just to set the record straight on this one: it is cool, but it ain't money. The only people that make money on online music downloads are the recording companies. Apple (and anyone else doing this) will consistently loose money on it until they aquire a record label ... look for the Beatles to be salivating for Apple to do just that.

SiliconAddict
Dec 3, 2003, 09:47 AM
Originally posted by dguisinger
Don't forget Walmart

Thanks. I knew there was another retailer in there but Walmart didn't ring a bell.

Speaking of bells can we expect Taco Bell to open up a Latin music story soon? :rolleyes:

This really is starting to get ridiculous.

AmigoMac
Dec 3, 2003, 10:16 AM
They all together surely are going to catch the 100%...


... of the ~25 - 30 % iTunes will let them

;)

you do the math.

SiliconAddict
Dec 3, 2003, 10:19 AM
Originally posted by Lanbrown
What about hardware problems? They have no details on it as the designs are still in the works. Products need to be tested. Just ask Dell about its PDA and PPC 2003 fiasco.

If there is a hardware fault and they are already in the customer's hands, they have a huge problem. They are rushing it to market just to match Dell.

You are questioning hardware that we know nothing about. If they started it last week yah there could be problems. But last month? 2 months? 6 months? When did HP start working on these devices? And truth be told there isn't a whole heck of a lot that goes into these devices.
Hard drive, LCD, RAM, ROM, battery, USB/FW controller, a few other chips

Itís more about integrating the parts in a manner that makes the device as small as possible. As others have already mentioned HP makes some dang fine hardware. (The software is another matter. It typically sucks.) Unlike Dell who has some company in Taiwan design and manufacturer their products HP, with a few exceptions, designs their own products. I still own a first gen HP Jornada Pocket PC and I have to tell you it is the only Pocket PC that has an honest to god metal shell that is down right sexy. When HP designs something right it can go the distance with an Apple product.

peejay
Dec 3, 2003, 10:57 AM
HP will get a similar benefit to Apple in that they are going to bring out their own MP3 Player so they will be using the music downloads to encourage sales

This is not true in HP's case, since they're going to use WMP files, just like all the others, so any other player (with the exception of iPod) can connect with their service. That means if HP makes little or no money on the service (like Steve Jobs said of iTMS), they're only driving sales of the generic WMP-compatible player market, not necessarily their own.

Furthermore, although HP is a respected brand name, do you think the average person thinks "Hewlett-Packard" when they want music? No: they think HP when they want scientific calculators or oscilloscopes. "HP Music Store" is like "IBM Film Studios."

iMeowbot
Dec 3, 2003, 11:02 AM
Originally posted by PretendPCuser
You are a PC maker that is primarily competitive based on price. Meaning your profit margins are thinner than Apples.

HP are in far better shape than that. They showed a profit of USD1.4 billiion for the FY just ended. Remember that they run an insanely successful printer and peripherals business, and are the top seller in the rather profitable Unix server market. This is certainly no Dell; there's actual engineering going on there (and word has it that they're pretty good; it was an HP engineer who designed the Apple I and II).

Fukui
Dec 3, 2003, 11:13 AM
Damn...

This is getting ridiculous!

If all these competitiors still can't take down apple and iTunes in terms of Market share, MS will probably bundle WMP Store into Windows in order to save WMA....then expect a lawsuit....

Buy your copy of Office before its too late! :D

Analog Kid
Dec 3, 2003, 11:29 AM
Originally posted by SiliconAddict
Speaking of bells can we expect Taco Bell to open up a Latin music story soon? :rolleyes:

Ok, see the difference there is that that would be cool!

I don't care how many outlets there are to buy Coldplay or whatever-- I'd love to see niche stores popping up offering things I can't find at Sam Goody (*shudder*)...

jouster
Dec 3, 2003, 11:32 AM
Originally posted by wsteineker
I wouldn't count HP out just yet. I work for a major retailer, and I can tell you that their machines are both terribly popular and fairly well built (compared to the rest of the PC lot). They have huge brand recognition and a fairly large installed user base. Couple that with an HP branded player and you've got a recipe for solid performance.

The installed base of HP machines doesn't matter. The interface will be the same for all Win PCs, at least if HP has any sense. If it restricts use to its own PCs, then it's just cutting off its nose to spite its face. And since the ports are all standard, the player will presumably work whether you own a HP, Dell, Acer etc.etc. Again, they only hurt themselves if they make everything proprietary.

Only one company is silly enough to make everything proprietary, thus continually crippling itself in markets that it invented.

Can you guess which one?

Analog Kid
Dec 3, 2003, 11:41 AM
Originally posted by iMeowbot
HP are in far better shape than that. They showed a profit of USD1.4 billiion for the FY just ended. Remember that they run an insanely successful printer and peripherals business, and are the top seller in the rather profitable Unix server market. This is certainly no Dell; there's actual engineering going on there (and word has it that they're pretty good; it was an HP engineer who designed the Apple I and II).

Hm. Thought IBM was top in server sales, but maybe not...

If their laptops are anything to judge HP's portable products from, I'll steer clear of their player. Friend handled purchasing for a small company and switched from HP to IBM after dealing with a 60% return rate. Anecdotal-- your mileage may vary as I'm sure to hear...

In any event, don't confuse the "old" HP with the "New HP!". I'd argue that it was an Agilent engineer who designed the Apple I and II...

asphalt-proof
Dec 3, 2003, 11:41 AM
I think that this is an insidious plot by Microsoft to ensure the failure of Apple's iTunes. Follow my down the rabbit hole...
Microsoft wants to ensure that WMA is THE standard when it comes to digital music. Just like IE is the standard web browser, Microsoft Office is the standard office suite, and, of course, Windozes is the standard desktop. Microsfot wants to be as ubiquitous in as many areas as possible.
I wouldn't be surprised it Microsoft is "supporting" the other download sites. Then they don't have to answer to a federal judge about using their monopolist power to put a rival under. They have every other mucis service doing it for them. If every brand steals 5-10% of music download sales AND mp3 player sales then Apple would be forced to depart the arena. Ask yourself..."Self, why else is every company getting into this market if its a proven loss leader. Even the curent market leader is saying that its a loss"

Somoething tells me that there must be something to this music business that makes these companies salivate. Dell and HP, despite what we think about their hardware, software, are NOT stupid companies. These are companies that did quite well during the last .com boom. Something's up.

MOM
Dec 3, 2003, 11:44 AM
Originally posted by iMeowbot
Maybe this one will be programmable in RPL and have a voltmeter accessory.

Hey, I like my RPN calculator from HP. Then again I think their quality and design may have peaked with these calculators. The buttons on the calculator are the best I've ever tried. They let you feel when you've pushed the number. Details like that are what I love about Apple products.

However, my experiences with more recent HP products is that they are very average at best. No software in a box with the printer. Another laser printer that eats toner like mad, etc.

winmacguy
Dec 3, 2003, 11:48 AM
Originally posted by synergy
With the numerous licensing rights in each country not many yet have decided to do much of anything in Europe.

In fact Microsoft is trying some music download service in Europe but they are also getting sued for patent infringement:

http://www.infoworld.com/article/03/10/14/HNtiscali_1.html
bit unfortunate for Microsoft then eh.... ;)

jouster
Dec 3, 2003, 11:48 AM
Originally posted by asphalt-proof
Ask yourself..."Self, why else is every company getting into this market if its a proven loss leader. Even the curent market leader is saying that its a loss."


Because if enough people change their music buying habits it will stop being a loss leader. No one wants to risk missing those profits.

Analog Kid
Dec 3, 2003, 11:55 AM
Originally posted by jouster
The installed base of HP machines doesn't matter. The interface will be the same for all Win PCs, at least if HP has any sense. If it restricts use to its own PCs, then it's just cutting off its nose to spite its face. And since the ports are all standard, the player will presumably work whether you own a HP, Dell, Acer etc.etc. Again, they only hurt themselves if they make everything proprietary.

Only one company is silly enough to make everything proprietary, thus continually crippling itself in markets that it invented.

Can you guess which one?

Could it be the same company that "ignited the personal computer revolution" and is still alive today with a reputation for innovation and building solid products?

Could it be the same company that first made USB, Firewire, 802.11 and Bluetooth central parts of it's product line? Or where you referring to the Centronix port?

Get off the proprietary kick.

What the author meant is that HP has brand recognition, which is useful. It's a respected brand, which is also useful.

My added comment is that they're competing against MS by selling MS products (WMA, XP), which is foolish.

SiliconAddict
Dec 3, 2003, 11:56 AM
Originally posted by asphalt-proof
I think that this is an insidious plot by Microsoft to ensure the failure of Apple's iTunes. Follow my down the rabbit hole...

Read my signature.
http://www.pocketpcthoughts.com/forums/images/smiles/deal.gif

This is me too syndrome not any great conspiracy.

TomSmithMacEd
Dec 3, 2003, 11:56 AM
Originally posted by Analog Kid
[B

HP probably thinks it has an advantage because they can bundle the portal with their machines-- until MS boosts their license fees in retribution. Maybe they're going to build their player around Itanium to boost volumes of the chip?

We should start a pool on which will collapse first. All these companies fighting for, what, 100,000 users?

[/B]
Let's try this. I want a pool. I am going to try and start one.

Analog Kid
Dec 3, 2003, 12:02 PM
Originally posted by asphalt-proof
Something tells me that there must be something to this music business that makes these companies salivate. Dell and HP, despite what we think about their hardware, software, are NOT stupid companies. These are companies that did quite well during the last .com boom. Something's up.

It's the same reason the whole world wanted a piece of the cell phone market a few years ago-- they all think they can be "the one".

Sure I make nothing per unit, but if you multiply that by billions of units you get... well...

Besides, there's nothing else exciting going on right now. No other bandwagons to jump on. These companies survived the bust, but that doesn't mean they didn't have some sort of eServices division or an online store.

Retailers are getting in because it could potentially threaten their CD sales.

mrsebastian
Dec 3, 2003, 12:13 PM
like someone else said... whatever. call me in a year or two and we'll see who's still standing and making money. is buymusic still up or are they starting write off their losses already?

QuiteSure
Dec 3, 2003, 12:17 PM
... because the iTunes/iPod combo only really works in its present form as long as BOTH are the best in class. As soon as another music download vendor finds a superior method of distribution to the consumer (it IS possible) Apple will be at a severe competitive disadvantage if the iPod does not support that vendor. Conversely, as soon as another music player manufacturer finds a way to provide consumers greater perceived value than the iPod, the iTMS will shrivel and die, unless it can support the new music player.

edenwaith
Dec 3, 2003, 12:25 PM
Originally posted by DTphonehome
Also, I will soon announce plans for my own digital music player. Stay tuned.

--DT

Dang, you too, huh?

Seriously, this is getting ridiculous. Apple gets the recipe right and then suddenly everybody and their mother wants to steal the pie.

edenwaith
Dec 3, 2003, 12:30 PM
Originally posted by mrsebastian
is buymusic still up or are they starting write off their losses already?

Grrr...I hope so. I once saw their commercial...how juvenile. Even worse is how they designed their web site to reject non Windows-IE browsers. I even tried to use Mozilla under Windows, and buymusic.com came up with a "Conform and be like everyone else" message. However, I was able to view the site from the Mac version of Lynx...hmmm...actually it probably looked better that way in text-only.

coolbreeze
Dec 3, 2003, 12:33 PM
Apple has created a monster.

QuiteSure
Dec 3, 2003, 12:35 PM
So, when is McD's going to announce its billion song giveaway?

winmacguy
Dec 3, 2003, 01:00 PM
Originally posted by QuiteSure
So, when is McD's going to announce its billion song giveaway? after Pepsi who will do theirs at the Super Bowl

emanu
Dec 3, 2003, 01:11 PM
Originally posted by iMeowbot
HP are in far better shape than that. They showed a profit of USD1.4 billiion for the FY just ended. Remember that they run an insanely successful printer and peripherals business, and are the top seller in the rather profitable Unix server market. This is certainly no Dell; there's actual engineering going on there (and word has it that they're pretty good; it was an HP engineer who designed the Apple I and II).

I think Jon Rubinstein Apple's Vice President Hardware Engineering worked at HP where he designed the HP 9000 which is the most deployed hp server worlwide.

eazyway
Dec 3, 2003, 01:19 PM
Making it work right is up to the software and here Apple has a huge advantage at this timje. this project has been in the works for over 2 years maybe even as many as 4 years.

the iTunes, iSync and rendevous are all part of the package.

Will Apple make iTunes for other players remains to be seen. But for now the mac community has a solid service that will likely be able to sustain itself . Even 3-5 % of the final market will be 30-40 million iPods and the music store will likely hold a slightly higher market. I also expect the iPod to retain upwards of 10% of the market.

Compare the Dell box to the iPod

battery size.. dell
ease of use ...iPod
looks.. iPod
software ...iPod

sturdiness ...iPod (no moving parts)

weight iPod 36% less
size iPod
remote... iPod

price...dell

But then again you get what you paid for.

The toronto Star had an article by a columnist Rachell Ross ... who actually stated the scroll divice in the dell was easier than the iPod. Wow
Here is her comparison
"The Dell DJ 20 Digital Jukebox is the MP3 player for music aficionados who aren't fans of the big Apple. Like some of the new Apple iPods, the Dell DJ 20 holds 20 gigabytes of music: that's about 4,900 songs. But Dell's simple user interface makes the iPod seem silly, if not altogether cryptic. Instead of the iPod's oversized, rotating circle, the Dell DJ has a small, clickable scroll wheel (much like the one found on computer mice). The Dell DJ is sleek and stylish but doesn't sacrifice usability for the sake of aesthetics.

Various repeat and shuffle features are available on the Dell DJ, as well as equalization settings for different kinds of music. Sort your tunes by album, artist or genre. You can also use the device as an audio recorder; The built-in microphone records with surprisingly good sound quality. Pick up a Dell DJ online for $449 at http://www.dell.ca.

What if you don't trust your teenager with something that expensive? If you're looking for a gift for a geek-in-training, consider the more reasonably priced Lyra Personal Digital Players by RCA. Lightweight and cute, the RD1071 model can store about four hours of MP3s. For $199." you can eMail Ms Ross at rross@thestar.ca

TyleRomeo
Dec 3, 2003, 02:10 PM
Originally posted by SiliconAddict
Thanks. I knew there was another retailer in there but Walmart didn't ring a bell.

Speaking of bells can we expect Taco Bell to open up a Latin music story soon? :rolleyes:

This really is starting to get ridiculous.

imimtation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Tyler

mdntcallr
Dec 3, 2003, 02:12 PM
Yes, Apple may have the best mp3 player, the ipod, but it is NOT compatible with any of the other competing music services.

best way for apple to protect its sales, make it also compatible with Window protected audio files also.

otherwise, they are going to lose out on sales.

QuiteSure
Dec 3, 2003, 02:13 PM
Originally posted by TyleRomeo
imimtation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Tyler

And compmetition is great for the consumer.

bellychris
Dec 3, 2003, 02:23 PM
alot of people i know still have windows 98... even though it may be a step backwards maybe they should consider writing for this os

bousozoku
Dec 3, 2003, 02:26 PM
Considering that HP has already had an ethernet-connected music server device for approximately two years, they might be a little more knowledgeable about the situation.

I wouldn't be surprised if they do as well as Apple in the industry. I never would have expected a computer company to sell reasonably good cameras, but HP does.

I would expect that HP would take an Apple attitude and only support their own player. In any case, I see HP and Apple standing at the end.

jettredmont
Dec 3, 2003, 02:26 PM
Originally posted by QCassidy352
does anyone honestly think they can make money with this many people in the market? What's gonna make any one of these services so good that people will choose it over another?

1) HP is not making a new service. They are rebranding MusicMatch (just like Dell does, despite earlier disavowals of any Dell/MM relationship).

2) The Service is jut there to give buyers of the HP device a link into a music store (which won't be filled with Dell and Samsung and Apple device ads).

Like Apple, HP will make the money off the device, not the service.

Unlike Apple, there is a little real competition (MusicMatch vs Napster and BuyMusic) and a lot of "fake" competition (the various rebrands of MusicMatch) in music download services compatible with the HP player, plus they are using a format at least passingly familiar to their target audience (Windows Media - "It has Windows in the Name so it's Gotta Be Good!" vs AAC - "AA what?")

On the other hand, unlike Apple's AAC, WMA files are great and proven virus propagation devices, but most of the public doesn't know that.

Not sure if this is good or not: HP's player is content-compatible with players from a dozen other companies, at every imaginable price point. Apple's player is not.

Contrasting this to Dell: the main problem with Dell (besides the clunky interface IMHO) is that people can't play with Dell devices in a store and then make a quasi-impulse buy. HP is one of the "quality" brands at chains like Best Buy (hook=eMachines price; sell=HP,Sony), which might just get thrown into that shopping cart next to the TV and universal remote.

jouster
Dec 3, 2003, 02:27 PM
Originally posted by Analog Kid
Could it be the same company that "ignited the personal computer revolution" and is still alive today with a reputation for innovation and building solid products?

Could it be the same company that first made USB, Firewire, 802.11 and Bluetooth central parts of it's product line? Or where you referring to the Centronix port?

Get off the proprietary kick.

What the author meant is that HP has brand recognition, which is useful. It's a respected brand, which is also useful.

My added comment is that they're competing against MS by selling MS products (WMA, XP), which is foolish.

Yes, course it is Apple. But you miss my point: I am certainly not trying to condemn, but rather already fear that they will be unable to maintain their lead by locking iPod users out of WMA. If PC manufacturers (HP or whoever) bundle a music download service, there will be far too many Windows users who will never use iTunes - they simply don't care what music store they use, indeed, they may not be aware there is a choice.

Apple is, to an extent, caught between a rock and a hard place, as making iTunes WMA aware will probably reduce sales of iPods.

Sure, Apple made all those things you mention first, but who cares? Everyone uses them now, and Apple has not benefitted in any way from being first. And doesn't that go some way to proving my point? Precisely because Apple did not keep things like 1394 proprietary, it is now popular.

I'm afraid I can't get off the 'proprietary kick' because I think it poses a real threat to the iPod's dominance. With the iPod so cool and popular right now, it seems hard to believe that it might fall to a niche position. I mean, that has never happened to Apple, right?

the_mole1314
Dec 3, 2003, 02:36 PM
Well, right around when MTV, HP, Dell, and others launch theirs, iTMS and Pepsi and mabey McDonald's will already have a promotional campaign going, so even if it did become pre loaded with a purchase, people will download/install iTunes for the free music.

As I've said before, Apple needs to recognize WMA, but treat it as another format that they'll support, not adopt. Make it so Dell, Samsung, and others would have no clame to the 'can only work with iTunes' debates. Apple wants iTunes to be the hub. People get to it through converting of WMA files, free songs, and promotions. They exit the hub (hopefully Apple thinks) with an iPod.

kidA
Dec 3, 2003, 03:01 PM
Originally posted by emanu
I don't think so. WMP is standard on PC boxes not iTunes or Quicktime. PC users allways use what they have and don't even look at the alternative solutions. It's the same thing once again. PC users already think WMP is a standard not AAC.
With HP joining the game, it's only reinforce this sentiment.
that's sort of a blanket statement. .wma is becoming a standard whether we mac folks like it or not. MS developed it but they license it out. other companies use it and make players for it. .mp3 had the same origins except it came from fraunhofer and not microsoft. i wouldn't, as a mac user, accuse PC users of always using what their given, either. that seems hypocritical since, as mac users, we're given itunes, iphoto, imovie, and now safari, among others. and how many of us use what we're given on the mac without really even caring what alternatives are out there? almost all i would guess--this discussion does involve iTunes, right?

rjstanford
Dec 3, 2003, 03:06 PM
Originally posted by jouster
Yes, course it is Apple. But you miss my point: I am certainly not trying to condemn, but rather already fear that they will be unable to maintain their lead by locking iPod users out of WMA. If PC manufacturers (HP or whoever) bundle a music download service, there will be far too many Windows users who will never use iTunes - they simply don't care what music store they use, indeed, they may not be aware there is a choice.

Apple is, to an extent, caught between a rock and a hard place, as making iTunes WMA aware will probably reduce sales of iPods.How about this. The only goal is to sell iPods, right? You do that by making sure that they can do everything that their users want them to do. This will include (and does now) the ability to pay WMA files, especially if you're targetting Windows users. So add that ability to the iPod.

Now take iTunes. You want it to be able to play any and all music, right? So let it play WMA files as well. This allows people with substantial ripped collections (many Windows users) or purchased songs (people who won't throw them away and rebuy in AAC) to use iTunes, and hopefully sync to their new iPod. This is a good thing.

Last, look at iTMS. This is where you stay with AAC. This means that while your device plays all formats, people who buy from iTMS can only ever play on an iPod. This keeps lock-in for your iTMS customers - which is the whole point of the iTMS existing.

Seriously though, Apple had better have a better business plan in mind than relying on "coolness" (always fickle) and the iTMS lockin. After all, when you can buy competitive products like the Nomad Jukebox Zen Xtra 40gb (http://us.creative.com/shop/promo.asp?id=1) for $250 (with free noise-cancelling headphones), you need an awful lot of "cool" to cancel it out - especially when its gift-giving season and the purchaser isn't necessarily computer-savvy (or made of money).

Apple's done this before - start with a product that's 5 times as good as the competition (for double the price) and end up with a product that's 25% better than the competition (for double the price). Competing on "vendor lock-in" is bad for the consumers here.

-Richard

kidA
Dec 3, 2003, 03:12 PM
Originally posted by the_mole1314
As I've said before, Apple needs to recognize WMA, but treat it as another format that they'll support, not adopt. Make it so Dell, Samsung, and others would have no clame to the 'can only work with iTunes' debates. Apple wants iTunes to be the hub. People get to it through converting of WMA files, free songs, and promotions. They exit the hub (hopefully Apple thinks) with an iPod.
this is the truth. apple needs to recognize and support .wma but not adopt it as their own. iTunes doesn't need a .wma encoder so as to be able to rip CDs to .wma, it just needs to be able to play them. let iTunes play protected .wma files from the other music services. really. then the iPod could do it all.

i think that HP has the potential to make a great player--one that will finally force apple to add more to the iPod. HP's idustrial design, of late, has been really great if you haven't noticed. certainly better than Dell's. The thing i wonder about though isn't players. it's music download services. Musicmatch and Napster are already pretty much clones of one another. nobody is going to care. the problem with them though is that, compared to th iTMS, they aren't that good. i have both on my windows machine and musicmatch is really slow and napster is really a PITA to navigate. the thing that's good about having multiple services is selection though. i've browsed all of them and they all have some different stuff. as a mac user, it would be nice to be able to access all of it. when the iTMS doesn't have something, the best thing would be, obviously, that they got it, but as a last resort, access to play the files at least from napster 2 would be a plus.

jouster
Dec 3, 2003, 03:16 PM
Originally posted by rjstanford
Seriously though, Apple had better have a better business plan in mind than relying on "coolness" (always fickle) and the iTMS lockin. After all, when you can buy competitive products like the Nomad Jukebox Zen Xtra 40gb (http://us.creative.com/shop/promo.asp?id=1) for $250 (with free noise-cancelling headphones), you need an awful lot of "cool" to cancel it out - especially when its gift-giving season and the purchaser isn't necessarily computer-savvy (or made of money).

Apple's done this before - start with a product that's 5 times as good as the competition (for double the price) and end up with a product that's 25% better than the competition (for double the price). Competing on "vendor lock-in" is bad for the consumers here.

-Richard

You've hit it on the nail IMHO. You know that conversation that you see floating around the Internet:

Jobs: Our products are better than yours
Gates: You don't get it Steve. That doesn't matter.

Well, it doesn't matter whether the conversation ever took place or not, because it is pretty much how Jobs views things. He doesn't understand that 'coolness' isn't the most important thing for many. He doesn't understand that most people don't care if something doesn't fit neatly into a 'product matrix.' He doesn't see that there are a lot of people who could care less what a product looks like since they will keep it in their pocket for most of the time. They certainly care how much ir costs, and whether it can play their growing library of pre bought WMP/MA files. To SJ, the idea of a such files in the iPod is anathema: it's almost like he feels they are not good enough for the iPod.....well, I think he is making an error, because I do not feel there are enough AAC buyers out there to maintain the iPod's position, and I don't think keeping iTunes and the iPod so closely interdependent will continue to generate iPod sales - especially not when something substantially the same yet much cheaper comes along. And such devices are starting to appear.

Therefore, I think your suggestions ^ are good ones, but I suspect they will never be implemented.

jettredmont
Dec 3, 2003, 03:16 PM
Originally posted by MOM
However, my experiences with more recent HP products is that they are very average at best. No software in a box with the printer. Another laser printer that eats toner like mad, etc.

1) HP printers come in two branches: the version with software and the version without. A bit bated example, but when I last purchased an HP inkjet printer, there was the "950" and the "952"; the "952" included Adobe PhotoDelux and a bunch of other crap; the "950" was cheaper and just the printer for those of us who already had/didn't want the software.

2) Of course HP printers eat ink and toner like mad ... that's where they make money!

jettredmont
Dec 3, 2003, 03:21 PM
Originally posted by jouster
Because if enough people change their music buying habits it will stop being a loss leader. No one wants to risk missing those profits.

Ahhh, the old, "lose money on every sale but make up for it in volume" strategy that's always worked so well!

IMHO, digital music will not be profitable until:

1) There are significantly fewer competitors
2) New contracts are worked out with the labels.

(1) will definitely come before (2), but I don't expect either any time this or next year.

Yes, you can reduce storage costs and somewhat alleviate IT costs by spreading it out over more customers, but with 5-10 companies out there you can bet that the instant one of them has lower per-sale costs they will drop (slightly to drastically) their prices to draw in more customers.

rjstanford
Dec 3, 2003, 03:26 PM
Originally posted by jettredmont
Yes, you can reduce storage costs and somewhat alleviate IT costs by spreading it out over more customers, but with 5-10 companies out there you can bet that the instant one of them has lower per-sale costs they will drop (slightly to drastically) their prices to draw in more customers. Sorry, but I can't resist thread tying ... Wouldn't this imply that having your high-margin device be able to use the files purchased from your competition's money-losing loss-leader stores be a Good Thing?

-Richard

Fukui
Dec 3, 2003, 03:27 PM
Originally posted by kidA
this is the truth. apple needs to recognize and support .wma but not adopt it as their own. iTunes doesn't need a .wma encoder so as to be able to rip CDs to .wma, it just needs to be able to play them. let iTunes play protected .wma files from the other music services. really. then the iPod could do it all.

I'm starting to think the same thing.
At the very least, iTunes on windows could take advantage of the built in API's and let windows hadle the protected and regular WMA 9 files, that way they don't have to engineer the solution themselved.

On the iPod though, how do they add protected playback and not pay the MS tax?? If given a choice between the two, I think only the iPod should be able to play WMA...I think steve is willing to go this route, but only as a last resort.

jouster
Dec 3, 2003, 03:30 PM
Originally posted by jettredmont
Ahhh, the old, "lose money on every sale but make up for it in volume" strategy that's always worked so well!

IMHO, digital music will not be profitable until:

1) There are significantly fewer competitors
2) New contracts are worked out with the labels.

(1) will definitely come before (2), but I don't expect either any time this or next year.

Yes, you can reduce storage costs and somewhat alleviate IT costs by spreading it out over more customers, but with 5-10 companies out there you can bet that the instant one of them has lower per-sale costs they will drop (slightly to drastically) their prices to draw in more customers.

I didn't mean to seem to push one particular strategy; I don't know enough about the business models in questio to comment. Your observations may well be accurate; they certainly seem sensible.

I just meant that some kind of new model will need to be found if any type of 'digital content sold remotely' company is to succeed.

The point of the post was that I believe that there is such a model out there, though of course no one is quite sure what it is yet.

One thing I do believe: the content companies will have to be dragged in kicking and screaming. They've spent decades trying to convince the consumer that it was the medium (i.e. vinyl, tapes, CDs, shops, employees etc.) that was the main expense not the content. When that excuse is no longer available, how are they going to continue to gouge us?

eazyway
Dec 3, 2003, 03:43 PM
from kidA


Seriously though, Apple had better have a better business plan in mind than relying on "coolness" (always fickle) and the iTMS lockin. After all, when you can buy competitive products like the Nomad Jukebox Zen Xtra 40gb for $250 (with free noise-cancelling headphones), you need an awful lot of "cool" to cancel it out - especially when its gift-giving season and the purchaser isn't necessarily computer-savvy (or made of money).

Zen box is $314 on sale and 40% heavier. My kids jog and size and weight are very important to them. But it is all about what you can afford and more important what you really want. We are a PC (4) and Apple (2) household and all the kids(all in University..two taking computer science) all want the iPod not the Dell or any other device. You can rip and save in MP3 format from any store. Also the software which makes the device work is oh so important. The entire package is what sells which took a long time to develop is what will ultimately determine the best buy. The really big advantage of the iPod right now .... no moving parts except fot the HD. The next major step will be large capacity memory sticks or the something similar.

BTW I don't ever recall Apple selling a product for twice the price unless you want to compare a low end Chev to a low end Lexus and call that a fair comparison.

That is often done for PC's . Dell vs Apple or Dell vs Hp etc...People often compare two PC's and say the cheap one is the better deal without looking at what they are buying.(ie a 2 Ghz celeron vs 2 Ghz pentium III or IV or 2 Ghz Athlon or a 2Ghz PPC...they are not the same)

Check the Dell website and look at the equivalent products to Apple's and yes Dell is cheaper but not by a lot. Then you still have to add in shipping.

itsbetteronamac
Dec 3, 2003, 03:50 PM
GOD! All of these new companies want a piece of the pie, and are over saturating the market. They spend lot of money just to die soon after words, and hurt the true players who were around from the beggining. Apple did it right and is the best. If your going to hurt your self, don't hurt "actual players" in the process.

God why can't it just be like Apple, napster, and like rapshody. And in the end just be like Apple and Napster. (Gotta leave a little compition.

phillymjs
Dec 3, 2003, 04:22 PM
Originally posted by winmacguy
Well I could see Microsoft entering the market ... although it wont gain them any extra market share as they only do software.

Really? Then I must be imagining the Microsoft keyboard I'm typing this post on. :)

Microsoft will enter the market eventually, and they'll probably do it with another company's player that they will just brand and sell at a severe loss to undercut all the competing players. I wouldn't be surprised if their player only played .WMA files. As long as they include software that will automatically convert any MP3 to WMA, the sheep they call 'customers' will probably accept the limitation with few complaints.

I also wouldn't be surprised if they priced songs on their music store lower than competitors, even if it meant Microsoft was effectively paying a piece of the "real" price for every song purchased from them. They've got money to burn, and they're eager to bulldoze standards that compete with Windows Media format. So it will gain them market share in a way if they toss their hat into the ring.

The way Microsoft has handled the Xbox has shown that they are not at all shy about taking prolonged losses, as long as their presence in the market is taking some revenue away from their competitors.

~Philly

rjstanford
Dec 3, 2003, 04:53 PM
Originally posted by eazyway
[Zen box is $314 on sale and 40% heavier. My kids jog and size and weight are very important to them. ... BTW I don't ever recall Apple selling a product for twice the price unless you want to compare a low end Chev to a low end Lexus and call that a fair comparison.[/B] Did you even bother to follow THE LINK IN MY POST (http://us.creative.com/shop/promo.asp?id=1) (sorry for the shouting, but I guess some people missed it earlier) listing the Zen for $249 with the free noise-cancelling headphones? Apparently not... Actually, the online store just sold out today - but it was available from them when I posted... Or its $298 on Amazon (surely an easy comparison). As for the reviews, if you go to non-Apple sites you'd see that this is getting a lot of coverage. Heck, its frontpage on gear.ign.com. As it says in the review, "Creative had it easy: provide better value and superior sound quality than Apple and a good number of people will come to you. " Elsewhere, "Like its predecessor, it boasts a 98dB SNR, which puts it at the top of the jukebox heap. There is no portable on the market that can compete with the Zen family of portables in terms of audio fidelity. All you iPod owners are tricking yourself if you think otherwise. (I love my iPod, but I have no misgivings about its limitations.) If you appreciate high bit rate MP3s and have a decent set of headphones, then the Xtra will keep a smile on your face."

Apple has some serious competition out there these days. Apple fanaticism will keep the iPod strong for a while, but shouldn't be counted on to win Windows people over to the brand (especially when it can't play the standard (if annoying) Windows audio format) when damn near everything else serious can. Even if it weighs 1.5 ounces less than the competition (which may matter to some people, but probably doesn't matter at all to most gift-givers).

-Richard

Apmonia
Dec 3, 2003, 05:17 PM
The only reason why anyone downloads music from these services is choice. If iTunes has more artists and songs on its service, then it will win. Hands down. The smartest thing Apple can do is sign the smaller labels, those artists you can't walk into your local Best Buy and Wal-Mart and buy, and promote the hell out of them. Music lovers will use this service and that is what music lovers want. I couldn't the Trans-Siberian Orchestra at my local Best Buy so I bought the whole album off of iTunes for 9.99. That was twelve dollars cheaper than Best Buy's website anyway. And since Apple has been there from the beginning and a lot of artists use Mac's anyway, hopefully those artists will go to iTunes to distribute their music. Look at what Phish did over the summer. Could you imagine HP doing that? No way.

jero
Dec 3, 2003, 05:30 PM
hp?! man, i work for them and i never heard anything about this? who cares they will fall like all the others.

Edot
Dec 3, 2003, 05:32 PM
Originally posted by rjstanford
Did you even bother to follow THE LINK IN MY POST (http://us.creative.com/shop/promo.asp?id=1) (sorry for the shouting, but I guess some people missed it earlier) listing the Zen for $249 with the free noise-cancelling headphones? Apparently not... Actually, the online store just sold out today - but it was available from them when I posted... Or its $298 on Amazon (surely an easy comparison). As for the reviews, if you go to non-Apple sites you'd see that this is getting a lot of coverage. Heck, its frontpage on gear.ign.com. As it says in the review, "Creative had it easy: provide better value and superior sound quality than Apple and a good number of people will come to you. " Elsewhere, "Like its predecessor, it boasts a 98dB SNR, which puts it at the top of the jukebox heap. There is no portable on the market that can compete with the Zen family of portables in terms of audio fidelity. All you iPod owners are tricking yourself if you think otherwise. (I love my iPod, but I have no misgivings about its limitations.) If you appreciate high bit rate MP3s and have a decent set of headphones, then the Xtra will keep a smile on your face."

Apple has some serious competition out there these days. Apple fanaticism will keep the iPod strong for a while, but shouldn't be counted on to win Windows people over to the brand (especially when it can't play the standard (if annoying) Windows audio format) when damn near everything else serious can. Even if it weighs 1.5 ounces less than the competition (which may matter to some people, but probably doesn't matter at all to most gift-givers).

-Richard

Remember, Steve even said this, that the iPod is available through more channels than other hard drive based players. Not everyone buys products online, nor spends hours searching for special deals. The format of the music really isn't an issue. Songs purchased from any music store cannot be shared anyway, so what is the point of being able to support other peoples music. The selection across the stores does not seem to make WMA more appealing either.

On another note, if all of these companies are using MusicMatch with their players, what happens if MusicMatch goes under because they are running a money losing service? BuyMusic? It seems like they are risking a lot by not having their own store in house.

topicolo
Dec 3, 2003, 05:34 PM
My fear is of the iTMS falling apart because the greedy music labels signing exclusive deals with Apple's competitors. If the iTMS has no more music selection, the store will start to die off :(.

rjstanford
Dec 3, 2003, 05:48 PM
Originally posted by Edot
The format of the music really isn't an issue. Songs purchased from any music store cannot be shared anyway, so what is the point of being able to support other peoples music. The selection across the stores does not seem to make WMA more appealing either.Well, people are creating WMA files at home (its built into Windows) and have been for years - many of these people won't want to rerip their collections. Also, people are buying songs from these other services - most of these people don't want to repurchase their songs from iTMS. These people, with WMA files, feel that they have usable files. They can play them on most devices.

If Apple intends to support these users in the future as potential iPod users, then their iPod needs to support the WMA format. If the iPod plays any given format, then iTunes (at least on Windows, ideally on Mac) should also play it. Therefore, if Apple wants to target users who have, in the past, used WMP (many) or a non-iTunes music store (growing by leaps and bounds), it will have to support WMA.

Referencing your quote, I'm not talking about sharing purchased music files between users, just sharing existing (to that user) music between devices. And while WMA may not be appealing to you, it is appealing to many people (heck, so is Brittney Spears music). The question is whether Apple will target the iPod to the market reality, or to Steve Jobs' own personal music preferences. And the iPod is far from the only HD based player available in stores...

-Richard

barryishnikov
Dec 3, 2003, 06:01 PM
Originally posted by peejay
Furthermore, although HP is a respected brand name, do you think the average person thinks "Hewlett-Packard" when they want music? No: they think HP when they want scientific calculators or oscilloscopes. "HP Music Store" is like "IBM Film Studios."

Well, I certainly hope the average person does NOT think about calculators and ocilloscopes when they think of HP, or HP has done a less than effective job of rebranding itself than we thought. While I believe we still make calculators, HP divested itself of O-scopes several years ago with the Agilent spinoff. HP is a computer company, and is vying to become a digital entertainment technology company. You can expect HP to dive deeper and deeper into consumer electronics over the next few years.

eazyway
Dec 3, 2003, 06:18 PM
Originally posted by rjstanford
Did you even bother to follow THE LINK IN MY POST (http://us.creative.com/shop/promo.asp?id=1) (sorry for the shouting, but I guess some people missed it earlier) listing the Zen for $249 with the free noise-cancelling headphones? Apparently not...

-Richard

Yes I did follow your link and it showed the Zen at $314.99 and sold out not $249 as you suggest. So don't shout get yours links straight.

Having owned several Creative products over the years and hating most of them when they were touted as being the best this and that I will never again buy a Creative product again until I see/hear it in action.

As all good sellers they have to state hwo well the work or no one would buy them.

Java
Dec 3, 2003, 06:23 PM
Originally posted by edenwaith
Dang, you too, huh?

Seriously, this is getting ridiculous. Apple gets the recipe right and then suddenly everybody and their mother wants to steal the pie. Aren't we used to this if we are Apple users? This is nothing new to the Macintosh community. Can we say eMachine?

tazo
Dec 3, 2003, 06:34 PM
well, I'll try it like all the other services that come out...

Highland
Dec 3, 2003, 06:42 PM
provide better value and superior sound quality than Apple and a good number of people will come to you." Elsewhere, "Like its predecessor, it boasts a 98dB SNR, which puts it at the top of the jukebox heap. There is no portable on the market that can compete with the Zen family of portables in terms of audio fidelity
I'm not saying that the Zen doesn't sound better than an iPod, BUT don't be fooled by specs--use your ears. I was very impressed with my iPod. And I have spent many years listening to 24bit uncompressed audio in a studio situation. BTW: if it is 98db, then they must be using a higher bit depth than 16bit (which has a THEORETICAL dynamic range of 96db). CDs are ALL 16bit (except SACD which hasn't taken off as a mainstream format). So my point is that that's a typo, or Zen are on some good smack.

Edot
Dec 3, 2003, 06:47 PM
Originally posted by rjstanford
Well, people are creating WMA files at home (its built into Windows) and have been for years - many of these people won't want to rerip their collections. Also, people are buying songs from these other services - most of these people don't want to repurchase their songs from iTMS. These people, with WMA files, feel that they have usable files. They can play them on most devices.

If Apple intends to support these users in the future as potential iPod users, then their iPod needs to support the WMA format. If the iPod plays any given format, then iTunes (at least on Windows, ideally on Mac) should also play it. Therefore, if Apple wants to target users who have, in the past, used WMP (many) or a non-iTunes music store (growing by leaps and bounds), it will have to support WMA.

Referencing your quote, I'm not talking about sharing purchased music files between users, just sharing existing (to that user) music between devices. And while WMA may not be appealing to you, it is appealing to many people (heck, so is Brittney Spears music). The question is whether Apple will target the iPod to the market reality, or to Steve Jobs' own personal music preferences. And the iPod is far from the only HD based player available in stores...

-Richard

I understand what you are saying about WMA, but the majority of personal music is in MP3 format which the iPod does support. iTMS had 80% marketshare of downloaded music. I don't think it is cost effective to pay licensing fees to support 20% of the market that are not guaranteed to switch to iTMS. The marketshare of iTMS is important to apple because they are able to provide an end to end solution. Supporting WMA uncovers more headaches as far as a solid service than it is worth right now. I agree Apple should find someway to allow people to switch to iPod/iTMS by transferring their songs. Maybe when they are comfortable with market dominance they will support WMA for the iPod.

the_mole1314
Dec 3, 2003, 06:48 PM
I recently had a discussion with another new iPod user today:

Him: "I love how the iPod works for windows, but my windows audio files won't work on it."

Me: "Yeah, I know."

Him: "Why?"

Me: "I don't know."

Him: "What should I do?"

Me: "Re-rip into aac or mp3 using iTunes for Windows."


Lets all mediate on that....

Highland
Dec 3, 2003, 06:51 PM
And another thing about audio and specs...

I'd rather use and listen to well built 16bit converters (IE old Apogee converters), than poorly built 24bit converters (most new PC sound cards). Also, the analogue signal portion of the unit plays a BIG part in quality.

My point is that you get what you pay for.

And you pay for what you skimp on!

Are we all forgetting that Apple is the BMW/Audi (and MINI!) of the computer world? There will always be cheaper and worse products. Fine by me, but I'm not buying them.

kwtneo
Dec 3, 2003, 06:55 PM
Isn't the battle ground really AAC vs WMA?
I mean all this talk about the ipod and itunes supporting WMA kindof presupposes one format has already 'won'. I don't think so and i don't think apple does either. I mean the same could be said for WMP then. Why don't they support AAC playback?

Whoever wins the format will win the war. And right now the jury's still out. if itunes is the trojan horse for ipods, i think the ipod is the trojan horse for AAC.

i sure hope apple wins this one...

Photorun
Dec 3, 2003, 07:11 PM
Originally posted by kwtneo
I mean the same could be said for WMP then. Why don't they support AAC playback?

Bingo. Thank you. Nail on the head! Everyone thinks Windoze is gotta be the standard, they're Microsloth, I mean, everything they make is gold right?!? BZZZTTT!! Dumbass Windoze lusers think this because they're used to being fed donkey doo and slopping it up by the plateful. Windoze and their slimy scum won't think backwards to ACC, and Microsuck wouldn't want it any other way, they dominate certainly not by their inferior bile, but by the fact they can crush the market because 1. people are in fact incredibly stupid/lemmings and 2. they don't have to budge an inch because see 1. It's a bummer, and yes, it'd be nice if Apple would win, but as the Refreshments sang so well a few years back "everybody knows, that the world is full of stupid people..."

Phobophobia
Dec 3, 2003, 07:35 PM
Guys, Apple will win. The people who don't care how high-quality something is are the same people who won't buy online music. Simple as that.

Steven1621
Dec 3, 2003, 08:10 PM
as it has been said before, don't they pay people to notice a little market saturation going on...

TomSmithMacEd
Dec 3, 2003, 08:18 PM
Originally posted by mdntcallr
Yes, Apple may have the best mp3 player, the ipod, but it is NOT compatible with any of the other competing music services.

best way for apple to protect its sales, make it also compatible with Window protected audio files also.

otherwise, they are going to lose out on sales.

We make all of this out to be such a big deal. The thing we all forget though is there isn't a market for this. Almost everyone I know would rather just get all the songs they want for free. Just being honest. I know it shouldn't be that way.

coolsoldier
Dec 3, 2003, 08:48 PM
Everybody is missing a larger point here (apparently that happens often here) -- Market saturation will not only kill many of these competitors that are popping up, it will kill the entire market when that happens.

Just wait until a service goes out of business, leaving all of their customers unable to authorize any of their downloads. Let's see how many people keep downloading music online... Personally, I trust Apple to stay in this for the foreseeable future. But most of my windows-using friends don't trust Apple as much as I do, and as soon as the masses realize that once your music distributor is gone, so is your music (well, it doesn't disappear until you buy a new computer, but it does eventually disappear), I suspect that even those who are willing to pay will sour on the DRM part.

Highland
Dec 3, 2003, 09:00 PM
Until they realise that iTunes DRM is easily defeatable, and WMA files are not... but then again, how long do you think it'll take for someone to make unDRM software for both? 2 weeks? 3 weeks? I don't see this as an issue.

coolsoldier
Dec 3, 2003, 09:13 PM
Originally posted by Highland
Until they realise that iTunes DRM is easily defeatable, and WMA files are not... but then again, how long do you think it'll take for someone to make unDRM software for both? 2 weeks? 3 weeks? I don't see this as an issue.

Because we all know that people will just jump to use arcane command line tools to decrypt their music libraries :rolleyes:

Highland
Dec 3, 2003, 09:18 PM
ok, so you wait 4 weeks for someone to put a GUI to it... (just look at the DVD tools available)

coolsoldier
Dec 3, 2003, 09:58 PM
Yes, the more tech savvy will probably crack the DRM when they are left in the dark by their e-tailer, but once that happens, I think they'll be going the illegal way in the future, since once you take the ease of use out the equation for the online stores they have no advantage other than karma (which is not usually all that great a selling point).

Not to mention the loss in average user appeal.

legion
Dec 3, 2003, 10:34 PM
I don't get the "negative" votes. Competition is good for users and I look forward to see what HP brings to the market. If it sucks, then I'll have nothing to do with it... if it's cool, well... the king is dead, long live the king

Seeing as HP's mobile group produces the iPAQ, if they integrate a hard disk music player with that, it will be awesome. If they cheapout, then it'll be boring and will fade into history.

No reason why to be down on that... (after all, I am not Apple, I buy Apple by choice if they make the better product.. no need to blindly follow just because of a brand)

As for a HP music store, well... I don't buy from any online music store at the moment (iTMS, Napster2, whatever...) since I like CD media from record stores and the ability to rip and rerip at any quality I want... plus financially there's no savings. I would like to thank iTMS for letting me have 30sec previews in order to find the right song I'm looking for, but I'm not thanking them with my money.

eazyway
Dec 3, 2003, 11:19 PM
Who knows maybe HP will brand Apple's iPod and not some other product. Wouldn't that be a gas.

macnews
Dec 3, 2003, 11:47 PM
blah blah. Too many online music stores and this one comes too late.

Highland
Dec 4, 2003, 12:42 AM
It's really sad that there's so much competition, but nothing will really work with anything else (easily). If I buy a CD it'll play in any CD or DVD player I purchase (hey, it might even work in my computer if the stupid record label hasn't put some dumb-ass protection on it)!

Does anyone know if it'll be easy to move files between the different WMA based players/stores??? (ie. If I download on Dell Music Store, and then want to transfer to my HP player).

Also, does anyone know if the quality of WMAs are as good as AACs? AACs seem to be a big step up from MP3...

Thanks.

Edot
Dec 4, 2003, 02:44 AM
I would like to say that without enforcement of digital laws, there is no way to stop this rampant digital crime. This is the same as saying, "As soon as I can take out my lock cutters/picks, these so called department stores won't have a market to sell to." Yeah, that sounds silly because there are laws that are ENFORCED to prevent the use of such devices in such a way. Until the enforcement of digital laws is in place it will be hard for anyone to make a successful business out of online digital media. Wouldn't it be nice if everyone just did the right thing. Then again locks do exist.:rolleyes:

billyboy
Dec 4, 2003, 04:56 AM
Originally posted by eazyway
Who knows maybe HP will brand Apple's iPod and not some other product. Wouldn't that be a gas.

Are you a clairvoyant or something? HP are bundling iPods right this moment for pro customers.

Maybe Apple are a lot cleverer and more appealing to the "PC world" than we think. AOL did a deal with MS over WMA which was lauded as a great breakthrough for MS. Then what do you see? A deal for one click to the AAC Apple iTunes Music Store on AOL. Maybe HP just thought the same, using Apple's kit for a piggy back marketing tool. Add in deals from Pepsi and MacDonalds, you could be seeing a huge wave of support for what Apple is all about in the music game.

In the past Apple have been a bit shy with their marketing, ie going it alone, but perhaps they have seen the light ie its better to have a small percent of something shared than 100% of almost nothing.

Lanbrown
Dec 4, 2003, 07:22 AM
Originally posted by SiliconAddict
You are questioning hardware that we know nothing about. If they started it last week yah there could be problems. But last month? 2 months? 6 months? When did HP start working on these devices? And truth be told there isn't a whole heck of a lot that goes into these devices.
Hard drive, LCD, RAM, ROM, battery, USB/FW controller, a few other chips

Itís more about integrating the parts in a manner that makes the device as small as possible. As others have already mentioned HP makes some dang fine hardware. (The software is another matter. It typically sucks.) Unlike Dell who has some company in Taiwan design and manufacturer their products HP, with a few exceptions, designs their own products. I still own a first gen HP Jornada Pocket PC and I have to tell you it is the only Pocket PC that has an honest to god metal shell that is down right sexy. When HP designs something right it can go the distance with an Apple product.

And a hardware design that isn't completed yet either. It would be one thing to be in a testing phase, but still in "the works" does not sound very promising. Even if that make the hardware with no bugs, they still have the software. A PPC is nothing compared to a player. The PPC platform was pretty much given to them as was the OS.

Apple doesn't make their own hardware, neither does Cisco, you mentioned Dell. There are many that do not. The reason is simple; it's cheaper to have someone else do it. The same holds true for chip manufacturing. Unless you produce a lot of product and will fully utilize a manufacturing plant, it's just not worth it.

Lanbrown
Dec 4, 2003, 08:01 AM
Originally posted by iMeowbot
HP are in far better shape than that. They showed a profit of USD1.4 billiion for the FY just ended. Remember that they run an insanely successful printer and peripherals business, and are the top seller in the rather profitable Unix server market. This is certainly no Dell; there's actual engineering going on there (and word has it that they're pretty good; it was an HP engineer who designed the Apple I and II).

Are you sure about that? Sun still holds the number one spot.
"The figures, made available to selected server vendors Monday, also cover Linux servers, servers with x86 chips and the overall performance of the server industry."

"Sun maintained its top ranking with 35.6 percent of the market."

"HP held a 31.5 percent share of the Unix market."

"Meanwhile, in focusing on the x86-based server market, HP remained the leader with its 31.6 percent share. That was down, however, from year-ago figures, when HP accounted for 34.5 percent of the market."

So if you meant x-86 that also runs windows then yes, they are number one. If you are talking purely UNIX or a type of derivative, then no, they are not number one.

http://news.com.com/2100-1010-5077446.html

Lanbrown
Dec 4, 2003, 08:21 AM
Originally posted by bellychris
alot of people i know still have windows 98... even though it may be a step backwards maybe they should consider writing for this os

License availability:

Windows 98 June 30, 1998 June 30, 2002 November 30, 2003*

Windows 98 SE June 30, 1999 June 30, 2002 March 31, 2004*

Windows Millennium Edition December 31, 2000 December 31, 2003 December 31, 2004

End of Life

Windows 95 December 31st 2000 December 31, 2001 December 31, 2002
Windows 98 / 98 SE June 30, 2002 January 16, 20046 January 16, 2005
Windows Millennium Edition December 31, 20038 December 31, 2004 December 31, 2005

So there is one year left of support from MS before they stop writing for Window 98. People that still use 98 will need to upgrade if they want to run newer software.

rjstanford
Dec 4, 2003, 09:32 AM
Originally posted by Highland
Does anyone know if it'll be easy to move files between the different WMA based players/stores??? (ie. If I download on Dell Music Store, and then want to transfer to my HP player).

Also, does anyone know if the quality of WMAs are as good as AACs? AACs seem to be a big step up from MP3...As to the first - that's the claim. And so far I haven't seen anyone complaining about not being able to do it - and I don't see any reason why they wouldn't be able to, either. This is potentially a Big Deal to a lot of people.

The quality - quite frankly, I think that WMA wins out at 64k and AAC wins out at 128k... although with 40gb+ HD players and firewire/usb2, why worry about it? I'm reripping everything (slowly) from 192k to 320k MP3s right now... Actually, I should stop that, go back, get a nice external drive, rip everything to FLAC, and then convert to format-du-jour at will in the future. D'oh! Ah, well, next time I guess. But I'm hardly representative :)

Oh, and as for the previous question of why MS doesn't support AAC playing in WMP - don't forget that Apple hasn't liscensed FairPlay (needed to play iTMS songs) to Anyone else. Nobody but iTunes and the iPod can play iTMS music (legally), and this will remain this way until Apple changes their mind.

-Richard

rjstanford
Dec 4, 2003, 09:36 AM
Originally posted by the_mole1314
I recently had a discussion with another new iPod user today:

Him: "I love how the iPod works for windows, but my windows audio files won't work on it."
Me: "Yeah, I know."
Him: "Why?"
Me: "I don't know."
Him: "What should I do?"
Me: "Re-rip into aac or mp3 using iTunes for Windows."

Lets all mediate on that.... Hmm. That's not a good sign. First of all, what if he bought the music? iTMS has, what, an 80% share of legit. downloaded music sales right now? And falling (inevitably, due to increased competition)? That's a lot of WMA files out there that people paid good money for. Don't you think they'd like to keep them? And what if your friend had 100 CDs he'd already ripped? Or more? At that point, it becomes easier to return the iPod and buy a slightly less cool competitor than to spend a few days reripping his collection.

Portability is the main reason that I don't do any WMA/AAC files - I'll take the openness of MP3, thank you - but there are lots of people out there who don't worry about things like that. As this conversation goes, if more people start hearing about their friends buying iPods and not being able to use their existing music on them, don't you think that this is going to hurt potential iPod sales?

-Richard

rjstanford
Dec 4, 2003, 09:44 AM
Originally posted by eazyway
Yes I did follow your link and it showed the Zen at $314.99 and sold out not $249 as you suggest. So don't shout get yours links straight.Hmm - very weird. If I go back there, it says that I still have one of them in my cart (has an "in cart" button rather than the price). Checking the cart (see picture) shows it at the original price. So I'm sorry that they raised the price on you. I guess that the demand was high enough, even after they got completely sold out of stock on hand. Which certainly makes it look like some people like this product more than the twice-the-price iPod (which was the original discussion poinit after all). On the other hand, if anyone out there has Windows-type relatives who want an MP3/WMA player, I guess I still have the option to get these at $249...

-Richard

edit: reduced image size

tychay
Dec 4, 2003, 11:54 AM
Originally posted by Lanbrown
Are you sure about that? Sun still holds the number one spot.

Yeah, I think he's a bit off. Even including their Linux business, HP doesn't beat Sun. Though I think HP's Linux and Unix business is more diversified than Suns.

But the original poster is correct in saying that HP was very profitable last quarter.

Then again, it seemed the entire sector is doing well. Also, he claims this profit in this division (the largest total profit and largest revenue) and printers (best margins) shows "real innovation going on."

I don't believe so.

We all know that the Sun is setting. :(

Much of the old HP was spun off in Agilent. Most of what we know as HP computers are just HP branding done on the same computers. This announcement coupled with their move into flat panels shows that they are following the same ODM design chain and OEM supply chain paths as Dell. Printers cannot remain a high margin business forever.

Profit is nice. I seem to remember in the early 90's a certain personal computer manufacture had incredible profits and high margins and was in the printing business also. But then they became rudderless, inefficient, with too many product offerings. It was in danger of going out of business and the number of buyout rumors became a cacophony.

A certain person once gave this quote about finding a new CEO for that company and it'll very likely apply to HP in a decade: "Right now the job is so difficult, it would require a bisexual, blond Japanese who is 25 years old and has 15 years experience!"

(That company found such a CEO, HP will not be so lucky.)

eazyway
Dec 4, 2003, 01:53 PM
Originally posted by rjstanford
Hmm - very weird. If I go back there, it says that I still have one of them in my cart (has an "in cart" button rather than the price). Checking the cart (see picture) shows it at the original price. So I'm sorry that they raised the price on you. I guess that the demand was high enough, even after they got completely sold out of stock on hand. Which certainly makes it look like some people like this product more than the twice-the-price iPod (which was the original discussion poinit after all). On the other hand, if anyone out there has Windows-type relatives who want an MP3/WMA player, I guess I still have the option to get these at $249...

-Richard



edit: reduced image size


maybe you still can get the price if you checkout. I notice that that price had a 28% discount. Not the 10% on the site . Just bought 3 20 GB iPods for the kids for Christmas... I have 3 very high tech oriented kids and they just drool over the iPod ... 2 of them like to jog and my eldest daughter tested the iPod while running and found it excellent during the run. She hated to give it back to the store. They loved the scroll wheel and the remote !

I am very wary of running with music plugged in. So I insist they run along the lake and not the road.

Took advantage of the Thanksgiving discount and free engraving. Still a pricey deal. ($359 ea)

cheers

Highland
Dec 4, 2003, 08:27 PM
The quality - quite frankly, I think that WMA wins out at 64k and AAC wins out at 128k...
Well... 64k is no good at all for a music download service (there's NO WAY I'd pay for a 64k song!).

acarboni
Dec 5, 2003, 03:31 AM
This just in:

Big Lots, the nation's favorite closeout store, is going to be opening its own online digital music store by the end of the year.

"Our brick and mortar stores already have an excellent selection of Milli Vanilli, Color Me Badd, and Green Jello albums. We're excited to be offering this selection of music to our customers 24 hours a day on the internet, whatever that is," said spokesman and washed-up sitcom actor Jerry Van Dyke. "We actually have no idea what a 'download' is, but everyone's opening one of these interweb stores, so we figured we'd jump on the bandwagon."

When asked if a music player or jukebox program would be bundled with the service, Van Dyke said "Do you have any food? I'm so hungry. I could really use something to eat. Or some penecillan. My insurance from 'Coach' ran out in 1997, and I've been really itchy ever since."

Dahl
Dec 5, 2003, 01:00 PM
He he :D

ryaxnb
Dec 7, 2003, 12:00 AM
Originally posted by SiliconAddict
Thanks. I knew there was another retailer in there but Walmart didn't ring a bell.

Speaking of bells can we expect Taco Bell to open up a Latin music story soon? :rolleyes:

This really is starting to get ridiculous. MTV too.

iPost
Dec 8, 2003, 02:21 AM
Originally posted by eazyway
from kidA

Zen box is $314 on sale and 40% heavier. My kids jog and size and weight are very important to them. But it is all about what you can afford and more important what you really want. We are a PC (4) and Apple (2) household and all the kids(all in University..two taking computer science) all want the iPod not the Dell or any other device.

Seriously, if your kids run or jog, they do not want an iPod. I have two iPods (10 GB and 20 GB) and they've both locked up when I've taken them running. I tried clipping them to my waist and also attaching them to arm bands, and they still lock up (requiring you to do the two-finger salute to reboot them).

I really wish Apple would come out with a flash memory-based player. When I go running, I still take my old 128MB Rio player. It's really funny how in those iPod ads, they have people dancing around and shaking their iPod, which would also also lock it up -- just try it. Hard-disk players like the iPod aren't designed for rough handling like that.

I'm still waiting for the day when we will be able to buy an 8GB flash memory player. Solid state is the future if you ask me (and I guess the present too... I read some marketing blurb from Rio that flash memory players still make up about 80% of the portable player market).

Sabenth
Dec 8, 2003, 04:19 PM
I'd hate to see how much damage the drive really gets if people are dancing like the adds....