Upset that Apple’s iPod dominates the mp3 market, Microsoft has joined a consortium of nine Japan-based companies who are colluding to create what they hope will be the the iPod killer.
The consortium includes the likes of NTT DoCoMo (a mobile handset manufacturer), Toshiba Cor, Napster Japan, and others.Â The “iPod killer” software will be based off of Windows Media Player.Â The software will thus be given to Toshiba who will develop a device this summer with audio and video playback.Â NTT DoCoMo is also expected to come up with a mobile phoneÂ device that will utilize the Microsoft software and audio/video playback capabilities.
It is believed that technology-hungryÂ Japan is the perfect launching place for the new device.Â If successful, Japan could serve as a launching pad to moving the device into other markets.Â The iPod currently has more than half the share of the Japanese market.
I am going to disagree with the experts and analysts here.Â Not everything Microsoft touches turns to gold.Â If Microsoft wanted to compete, they should have done this, oh say, 2 YEARS ago.Â At this point, they are like the old geezer in the room desperately trying to stay hip.Â
In my opinion, its too little, too late. iPod has gained an intensely loyal following, and they clearly have some of the best marketing, ever.Â The iPod store and its ease of useÂ is another integral part of their success.Â Unless Microsoft can create something that blows the iPod out of the water, they’re just wasting their time. The iPod is here to stay, at least for awhile.