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Apple *yawn* fun

I fail to see much fun in today's announcement of an Intel Mac mini, iPod HiFi, and leather cases.

  • Mac minis are the most exciting announcement, but this just feels like Jobs milking the MacIntel announcements -- the MacBook Pros just started shipping last week.
  • iPod HiFi is no different from any of the other Bose/JBL/etc stereos on the market -- except I don't think it's very attractive. They did add software updates to the iPods themselves, but it's minor upgrades such as large album art display.
  • The leather cases are 4x as expensive as my Case-ari leather case, but my Case-ari case is both high quality and it lets me use the controls and see the display.

If I were a thirdparty Apple accessory provider I would start looking for another platform to develop products for. Why develop accessories for the iPod when you know Apple is just going to take a huge cut of every product you sell, copy your ideas, make minor updates to the iPod firmware, and put the full weight of their marketing division behind it?

There is a balance between having total control over the user experience and farming it out to thirdparty vendors. Apple is moving towards total control over the user experience -- hardware, software, accessories, .Mac and store. This provides very little incentive for companies like Belkin, Griffin, Adobe, Konfabulator, and others to develop new and innovative products -- Apple will just copy them and win. Control over the user experience is nice, but if other companies are already making great accessories for your products, why not just help make them even better instead of pushing them out?

Microsoft has obviously gone too far into the farming out territory and lacks a good end-to-end user experience with music players. Jobs is right that Microsoft would probably have to do it's own music player if it wished to beat the iPod, but if Microsoft exercised half the control over it's platform that Apple has it would probably find itself back in antitrust court.

Comments (1)

M Author Profile Page:

I too am completely baffled by Apple's choice to make copycat accessories -- their focus should be on products, not accessories, especially since Apple already receives a cut of "made for iPod" accessories.

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This page contains a single entry from kwc blog posted on February 28, 2006 12:54 PM.

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