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  1. #221  
    I saw that before and it was a stupid answer, and also bad for the consumer as far as I'm concerned!

    "Zune says there is no choice; you get a Zune device, you hook it up to the Zune service, and it just works." Who wants to pay $250 then be confined to only one store AGAIN? Didn't we do this on the iPod? Then they use the fallacy of "people want choice". Aren't Zune format and Plays for Sure format both 160-192K WMAs, so where exactly is the difference??? Except for the type of DRM, that is.
    HP has officially ruined it's own platform and kicked webOS loyalists and early TouchPad adopters to the curb. You think after you drop it like a hot potato and mention it made no money and is costing you money, anyone else wants it??? Way to go HP!!

    And some people are fools to keep believing their hype. HP has shown they will throw webOS under the bus and people are still having faith in them??? News flash: if it's own company won't stand behind it, it's finished!
  2. #222  
    Quote Originally Posted by TazUk View Post
    Isn't that the niche that CoWon's iAudio players are meant to fill?
    Somehow Creative and Cowon don't get their point across well enough in America. They do sound better, but many Americans will never find out if they both don't step up the advertisement.
    HP has officially ruined it's own platform and kicked webOS loyalists and early TouchPad adopters to the curb. You think after you drop it like a hot potato and mention it made no money and is costing you money, anyone else wants it??? Way to go HP!!

    And some people are fools to keep believing their hype. HP has shown they will throw webOS under the bus and people are still having faith in them??? News flash: if it's own company won't stand behind it, it's finished!
  3. #223  
    Quote Originally Posted by surur View Post
    It doesnt really come down to impressed or not. Its simply when the buying public are in stores this christmas, and see the Zune and Ipod next to each other, which one will the chose. Most will still chose the Ipod, but I bet a good 15-20% who were going to chose and Ipod will not chose a Zune.
    (Something like) real numbers:

    Apple's iPods gain holiday market share, researcher NPD says

    By Troy Wolverton
    Mercury News

    Apple Computer's iPods dominated holiday sales of MP3 players, increasing their market share from last year, according to preliminary data from research firm NPD Group.

    In the five-week period from Nov. 19 to Dec. 23, iPods accounted for 57.3 percent of all players sold at a panel of electronics stores that notably didn't include the Cupertino company's own retail outlets. Apple's share was up from 42 percent for a similar period last year. Milpitas memory-products maker SanDisk was No. 2 with 19.2 percent of units sold, down from 22.1 percent last year. Microsoft, which debuted its Zune player in November, came in fourth behind Creative Technology with 2.8 percent of the market. Creative had 3.4 percent.


    http://www.mercurynews.com/mld/mercu...s/16372809.htm

    iPods 57.3%, Zune 2.8%, so Zune less than five percent of iPod sales (based on these figures, which don't even include Apple Store purchases).

    Perhaps even more notable, rather than falling iPod market share actually seems to have increased, and increased by a goodly amount at that. I think it's pretty hard to make the case that the Zune really hurt Apple at all in 2006.
  4. #224  
    Looks like there won't be a Zune phone anytime soon:

    Robbie Bach, president of Microsoft`s entertainment and devices division, said it too is considering a mobile phone integrated with its Zune digital music player, but launching such a device is not at top of its priority list.

    Microsoft launched its Zune portable music player in November and set a sales target of more than one million units by the end of June. It is the first Microsoft-designed device in a market dominated by Apple, which has sold more than 70 million iPods since it was launched in October 2001.

    The longtime Apple rival plans to come out with new Zune models later this year, but Bach said do not count on a phone model just yet.

    "It`s probably on the table of things for us to look at, but not the number one thing we are focused on," said Bach, speaking to analysts at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.


    http://www.zeenews.com/znnew/article...id=365&sid=ENV

    I wonder what "the number one thing" they're focused on is. Improved HD player, flash player?
  5. #225  
    I never wanted the I Pod because of its DRM (Digital rights management). I have converted every cd I have to mp3s so I now have an enormous collection of songs on more than one pc. The idea of having data deleted from my device when I switch from my laptop to my pc is unacceptable to me. This is where the Treo wins. I don’t need to toat around 30GB of music and videos. 4GB is fine. The ease of removing my Mp3s or other formats to an SD card makes the experience 1000x better than what Microsoft and apple offer. All palm has to do now is improve the amp in their product. I recommend somebody try using Foobar2000s kernel and porting it over to the palm OS while Palm should work on the Hardware’s sound quality. If palm played it rite they could be the new IPOD but as things stand at the moment I and many others are so turned off with the WI-Fi promise and internal Ram issue that I am constantly looking at other products on the market..

    Nothing pisses off a person more than broken promises & crappie support so next time around "sorry Palm” but I’m not buying another product from you.

    Another example of Palms disregard towards customer satisfaction is support for 4 and 8GB SD cards.
    Palm is so into fattening their pockets that they won’t release a rom update for 650 users so that we can use the larger card sizes & extend the usefulness of our products. instead we need to look for hacks on the web to do it. This is a clear indication that palm is trying to sell me another phone but the problem is I don’t want another phone yet mine are working just fine. New features are nice but normal people don’t buy a new car every year just because something new comes out thats faster. Only shallow simple minded persons do that and the last time I check most of them are not willing to learn how to work a Treo. If you did your homework Palm you would find that most of them end up replacing their Treos with Sidekicks. How do I know? I deal with all kinds of people.
    On the streets of NY when the Treo first came out most the 650s ended up getting sold for $100 or less because the constant resets made the phone too unreliable. I was able to pick one up in trade for a Motorola razor and two more for a Laptop with a broken screen. I actually had 4 650’s and only paid full price for my first one.


    PS: I don't know how this turned into a rant. I guess I just can't get WI-FI off my mind. sorry
    Last edited by Bronxboy; 01/09/2007 at 07:32 AM.
  6. #226  
    Quote Originally Posted by Bronxboy View Post
    I never wanted the I Pod because of its DRM (Digital rights management). I have converted every cd I have to mp3s so I now have an enormous collection of songs on more than one pc.
    Any iPod will play your MP3s.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bronxboy View Post
    The idea of having data deleted from my device when I switch from my laptop to my pc is unacceptable to me.
    To have music from more than one computer on an iPod all you need to do is set it to manual mode:

    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=61675

    You lose the sync-on-connect functionality and have to drag and drop.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bronxboy View Post
    This is where the Treo wins. I don’t need to toat around 30GB of music and videos. 4GB is fine. The ease of removing my Mp3s or other formats to an SD card makes the experience 1000x better than what Microsoft and apple offer.
    Can't speak for the Zune (I've never used one), but I'd argue that even in manual mode it's easier with an iPod than a Treo because you can take advantage of iTunes (which has everything very nicely organised) to do the drag and drop thing - you can even use smart playlists (just select all of the contents and drag to the iPod).

    Quote Originally Posted by Bronxboy View Post
    All palm has to do now is improve the amp in their product.
    I don't know what the technical reason is, but to my ears both the Treo 600 and Treo 650 are markedly worse than any iPod I've listened to. Seems to me the advantages of the Treo are those of convergence: only one device to buy, only one device to carry, only one device to keep charged. But for this convergence you have to forgo all the advantages that a dedicated player offers: better audio quality, higher capacities, better UI, better controls, etc. You just have to weigh up what best fits for you.
  7. #227  
    I put my iPod in manual mode, and have been dragging and dropping music and video too. It takes longer than auto-sync but I prefer it that way. More control over what goes on the device.

    And MP3s will play on any player, Bronxboy. If you don't like iPod, try Creative.
    HP has officially ruined it's own platform and kicked webOS loyalists and early TouchPad adopters to the curb. You think after you drop it like a hot potato and mention it made no money and is costing you money, anyone else wants it??? Way to go HP!!

    And some people are fools to keep believing their hype. HP has shown they will throw webOS under the bus and people are still having faith in them??? News flash: if it's own company won't stand behind it, it's finished!
  8. #228  
    Just so you both know I'm well aware that Mp3's play on the Ipod. transfering them off is another problem i have with it.

    Can't speak for the Zune (I've never used one), but I'd argue that even in manual mode it's easier with an iPod than a Treo because you can take advantage of iTunes (which has everything very nicely organised) to do the drag and drop thing - you can even use smart playlists (just select all of the contents and drag to the iPod).
    I do all that with Music match Jukebox via the hotsynk cable or with an sd card. Its all neatly organized with album art, track numbers, customizable ratings and a slew of other things. they even have a music service much like apples I-tunes store. Musicmatch has been at this long b4 Apple.
    Its always amazed me how people keep talking about I-tunes like its something so special when Musicmatch was offering the same services for the pc back in the late 90ís Thatís why over the years it was constantly ranked #1 and boast the tittle of World's best music player & now World's best music Service. Donít believe me? here is a link http://www.musicmatch.com/

    Trusting Apple for innovation on the software front is like trusting Microsoft but for the most part Apples better. however Apple does not have a gazillion things to par with their hardware with. Still I must admit it shocked me that the I-pod did so well. but to Apples credit, it was attractive, sounded good And was compatible with windows. Must burn Microsoft up that they kicked their **** on windows.

    I don't know what the technical reason is, but to my ears both the Treo 600 and Treo 650 are markedly worse than any iPod I've listened to. Seems to me the advantages of the Treo are those of convergence: only one device to buy, only one device to carry, only one device to keep charged. But for this convergence you have to forgo all the advantages that a dedicated player offers: better audio quality, higher capacities, better UI, better controls, etc. You just have to weigh up what best fits for you.

    As for the technical reason I do have a bit of experience in the field. Itís because of the Treos crappy amp. It produces a lousy frequency response. Good devices have very flat frequency responses that go from at least 20Hz to 20Khz witch is the so called limit to human hearing. In the case of the Treo it falls very short of the two targets and does not hold a flat response across the spectrum. However this is exactly what equalizers are for. If you use one of the Treos equalizers & a spectrum analyzer you can actually flatten itís responses to give it a more realistic sound. Couple that with a pair of headphones that are bright in the high bands and bassy in the lows and you can really make it sing. However this alone is still not going to sound quite as good as an I-pod but to a non trained ear most wonít be able to tell the difference unless you do side by side comparisons. Problem is I do have a trained ear so to me the lack of decent channel separation is disappointing. however since The treo is basically a computer the good news is that with proper software many of its limitations can be in a sense masked to give the illusion of wider stereo separation and more headroom. The bottom line is if carefully tweaked it could probably produce a sound that could fool most into thinking it was an I-pod or what ever else.

    But in the end i won't be getting an I-pod. i would much rather use one convergance device and when i want to listen to trully good sounding music ill just fire up my stereo
    Last edited by Bronxboy; 01/10/2007 at 01:58 AM.
  9. #229  
    Quote Originally Posted by Bronxboy View Post
    Just so you both know I'm well aware that Mp3's play on the Ipod.
    I misunderstood you. Sorry.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bronxboy View Post
    transfering them off is another problem i have with it.
    Agreed this is not a strength for the iPod. No doubt it's because Apple needs to be seen by the music companies to be trying to limit illegal music sharing. Still, there are plenty of third party apps to do this for you. I've used Senuti (on a Mac) in the past.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bronxboy View Post
    I do all that with Music match Jukebox...
    Looks nice. It seems to lack some of the graphical niceties of iTunes (like coverflow) and seems to be Windows only though. No podcasts either?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bronxboy View Post
    ...via the hotsynk cable or with an sd card.
    That's another problem I had with Treos as music players. If you use the Hotsync cable you're stuck with USB 1 so if you want decent transfer speed you're pretty much forced to buy a card reader and shuffle the card in and out every time you want add music.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bronxboy View Post
    Trusting Apple for innovation on the software front is like trusting Microsoft but for the most part Apples better.
    I'd say we've seen the results of some pretty impressive innovation from Apple in the last 24 hours!

    Quote Originally Posted by Bronxboy View Post
    But in the end i won't be getting an I-pod. i would much rather use one convergance device and when i want to listen to trully good sounding music ill just fire up my stereo
    I used to have the same philosophy, but now I find myself thinking that whenever I'm listening to music the quality should be as good as (reasonably) possible, and also I should have a decent sized collection from which to choose. Neither the Treos I've had in the past nor the Nokia E61 I have now really fit the bill anymore.
  10. #230  
    Quote Originally Posted by marcol View Post
    Looks like there won't be a Zune phone anytime soon:
    Or perhaps there will:

    http://crunchgear.com/2007/02/01/sou...-in-the-works/

    Microsoft Zune Phone In the Works

    It will be a smartphone that works homogeneously with the Zune marketplace. It will most likely not, however, run Windows Mobile. Rather it’ll make use of an interface similar to the current Zune, an interface that I consider among the best available on audio players—I’m sure it can transition to a phone easily.

    Connectivity is the major concern of the device. It is said that it will be able to sync with the Xbox 360 and stream video from the system to the phone via a wireless data connection. This would be pivotal in Microsoft’s proliferation of its media ambitions. Not only does it already have millions of 360s in homes capable of downloading movies, it’d be able to distribute those videos directly to its phones. Cool stuff.

    The thing that I find pretty amazing (if the rumour is to be believed) is that it's still at the planning stage but they aim to release later this year:

    Our tipsters inform us that Microsoft execs are in meetings today hammering out details of the device and developing strategies and timescales for its release...

    The other detail that seems certain at this point is that the device will, if things go as planned, be available for the ‘07 holiday season, which seems like a decent time line. That gives Microsoft about nine months to get everything together, an entirely possible feat.

    Nine months from 'hammering out the details' to being on sale? Seems incredibly quick to me. I suppose it could be that they have it all planned already but for a few finishing touches, and 'hammering out the details' is just adding those. That doesn't really chime at all though with what Robbie Bach said less than a month ago. Again:

    "It`s probably on the table of things for us to look at, but not the number one thing we are focused on," said Bach, speaking to analysts at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

    If Microsoft really has gone from "not the number one thing we are focused on" to planning to release a Zune phone this year it's hard not to speculate that this a consequence of Apple announcing the iPhone. And that's good - competition should work that way, IMHO, as long as it doesn't mean that Microsoft cut corners in order to get it out of the door quickly. I wonder if it will be called the 'zPhone'?
    Last edited by marcol; 02/05/2007 at 04:06 AM.
  11. #231  
    I don't know why they dont just add it as an interface to WM6. They would have an instant 15 million per year installed base. What are they thinking...

    Surur
  12. #232  
    Does anyone think a new Zune is coming at the end of the year? I would try a NEW style. This first one is just too clunky. But the fact that it will accept AAC is a plus.
    HP has officially ruined it's own platform and kicked webOS loyalists and early TouchPad adopters to the curb. You think after you drop it like a hot potato and mention it made no money and is costing you money, anyone else wants it??? Way to go HP!!

    And some people are fools to keep believing their hype. HP has shown they will throw webOS under the bus and people are still having faith in them??? News flash: if it's own company won't stand behind it, it's finished!
  13. #233  
    Quote Originally Posted by surur View Post
    I don't know why they dont just add it as an interface to WM6. They would have an instant 15 million per year installed base. What are they thinking...
    Brings to mind the issue of not supporting PlaysForSure DRM. With the Zune there's a real element of cutting off the tail. Justifying the absence of PFS in the Zune J Allard said:

    "There's another class of consumers that just want to get digital media, and they just want to be able to go to one store and have it all just plain, dead simple, and don't want to know what a codec is."

    http://www.engadget.com/2006/09/14/t...te-vice-presi/

    I think 'dead simple' is the aim and that probably explains why they'd make a Zune phone as something very different to WM. They want it to be as simple and consumer-friendly as possible. It will be interesting to see how it compares with the iPhone, but it's quite possible that we won't even be having the 'is it a smartphone?' debate.
    Last edited by marcol; 02/05/2007 at 05:30 AM.
  14. #234  
    Quote Originally Posted by The Phone Diva View Post
    Does anyone think a new Zune is coming at the end of the year? I would try a NEW style. This first one is just too clunky. But the fact that it will accept AAC is a plus.
    Robbie Bach's comments certainly indicate that, at least until a few weeks ago, they had Zune priorities other than a phone. Could be an updated HD player, could be a flash player, could be both. I've no idea, but I'd be very surprised if they just ripped up all the plans for 2007 to concentrate on a phone version.
  15. #235  
    Interestingly, the Zune does use playforsure, as illustrated by the fact it will load protected playforsure files and plays them when you load it up via windows media player.

    You are right that they could not guarantee a good experience if they have all different OEM's making Zune phones, but they hardly have anything to lose, have they?

    They claim to have taken 10% of the 30GB market, which leaves 4/5 of Apple's products with no competition. They desperately have to release a variety of form factors, especially flash based players, to really take on the Ipod on all fronts. It looks like its going to be a slow burn.

    Surur
  16. #236  
    Quote Originally Posted by surur View Post
    Interestingly, the Zune does use playforsure, as illustrated by the fact it will load protected playforsure files and plays them when you load it up via windows media player.
    Really? I'm confused. Asked:

    "How does PlaysForSure fit into Microsoft's strategy going forward? It doesn't appear that the Zune will be compatible with any PlaysForSure retailers. How does that affect Microsoft's current partners who rely on PlaysForSure?"

    J Allard says nothing to contradict the statement in the second sentence and later he says:

    "So they're two complementary solutions -- not everyones gonna want Zune and not everyone's gonna want PlaysForSure. They're different paths there, and we're okay with both of them."

    Quote Originally Posted by surur View Post
    They claim to have taken 10% of the 30GB market, which leaves 4/5 of Apple's products with no competition. They desperately have to release a variety of form factors, especially flash based players, to really take on the Ipod on all fronts. It looks like its going to be a slow burn.
    I rather like the quote from Wayne Gretzky that Steve jobs used in his Macworld keynote 'I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been'. For music players I think there's a fair case for saying that's phones and flash.
  17. #237  
    A bit more on Zune and PFS. This is what Jason Dunn said over at Zune Thoughts:

    You can listen to ANY MP3 or WMA file that you have, regardless of where it came from - the one limitation is that if the WMA file was downloaded from MSN Music, Napster, or a similar PlaysForSure service, it will not work.

    http://forums.thoughtsmedia.com/showthread.php?t=492
  18. #238  
    Quote Originally Posted by marcol View Post
    A bit more on Zune and PFS. This is what Jason Dunn said over at Zune Thoughts:

    You can listen to ANY MP3 or WMA file that you have, regardless of where it came from - the one limitation is that if the WMA file was downloaded from MSN Music, Napster, or a similar PlaysForSure service, it will not work.

    http://forums.thoughtsmedia.com/showthread.php?t=492
    Thank god for google. Here's a quote from David Caulton, a Microsoft Zune development team member.

    [CLICZUNE] Microsoft made it clear that the PlayForSure content won’t ever play on the Zune. But in a recent interview, a Microsoft spokesperson said to the BBC that the Zune Music could play on PlayForSure players. Can you tell us more about that compatibility?

    [DAVID] There’s been a lot of confusion about this, so thanks for asking. The facts:

    • Zune content can get out via Windows Media Player into playsforsure devices, but this scenario isn’t officially supported and may not be reliable.
    • Playsforsure service content can’t get into the Zune library for sync to Zune devices.
    http://www.cliczune.com/2006/11/excl...o_ne.html#more

    Not quite what I said unfortunately, but its pretty clear the underlying DRM is playsforsure, with an artificial roadblock on the Zune.

    Surur
    Last edited by surur; 02/05/2007 at 09:06 AM.
  19. #239  
    Quote Originally Posted by surur View Post
    Not quite what I said unfortunately, but its pretty clear the underlying DRM is playsforsure, with an artificial roadblock on the Zune.
    So, getting back to my original point, they have cut off a tail or two - i.e. access to PlaysForSure DRMed music from MSN Music, Napster etc, but they've done this not with a wholly new technology but with a modification to the existing PlaysForSure.

    I can see where they're coming from. They want something like iTunes that presents a nice simple, unified interface for all your music needs - plays music on the PC, controls what syncs to your music player, rips CDs, sells you songs etc. I'm basically for this but have several problems with what they've done:

    1) If you've bought individual PlaysForSure DRMed tracks from Napster or whatever (as opposed to a subscription service) you're stuffed if you buy a Zune.

    2) Two DRM schemes in the history of a company is one too many. How can you have trust that they won't leave users high and dry again? Seems to me they need to commit to the new scheme lasting in perpetuity and convince us that it won't be replaced with something incompatible in the future - and also think really hard about letting people get songs for free from Zune Marketplace if they've bought the track with the old PFS DRM.

    3) What's this going to do to OEMs and online music providers who are stuck with the old PFS? The whole thing is a real morass and if it ends up reducing competition for iPod/iTunes that's a really bad outcome, IMHO.

    4) How do users decide on which system to go with? I guess pretty much they're forcing people who want to buy DRMed WMA into a subscription service. Perhaps that was the plan all along?
  20. #240  
    I'm sure its just about copying Apple. You know, one device, one store, one lock-in. MS probably said it works for Apple, why not them.

    Surur

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