Microsoft Exec Had The Right Idea On MP3 Players Three Years Ago
from the ignored dept
As part of an Iowa antitrust case, an interesting email from Windows boss Jim Allchin has been released, and it gives a pretty damning review of Microsoft and its partners’ attempts at competing with the iPod. Given the subject line “sucking on media players”, the November 2003 email also reveals that Allchin wanted to talk with Steve Jobs and Apple to better build support for the iPod into Windows Media Player after a “really terrible” experience with Windows and a Creative music player. That, of course, never happened. Microsoft instead set up a committee to develop its iPod killer, though it resulted in the Zune instead. It’s been met with poor sales and reviews, which doesn’t seem like much of a surprise given some of its crippled features. Some have said that the Zune needs to be more like Windows in order to succeed, but that’s pretty off base. Allchin’s idea, of working with Apple to make iPod users’ experiences with Windows better, was a good one, really. By making Windows or Windows Media Player work more seamlessly and easily with the popular product, Microsoft would be enhancing the value of its own products. Now, it’s just wasting resources trying to replace the iPod, something its corporate culture makes very difficult, if not impossible.