Digital Media: Who has the lead?

For some time now Apple has been the leader in providing digital media. That’s because of their iPod lineup. The iPod has continued to get better with battery life, size, and styles. You can find an iPod that fits any type of person. But now the big company, Microsoft, is stepping into the game where others have failed to compete. Microsoft is only releasing one model with three different colors. Apple’s lineup is a lot more impressive. So what makes Microsoft think that they can compete. Well Microsoft is making sure that they don’t just provide a player but an entire setup of digital media. The Zune player is just the last piece.

It makes sense for Microsoft to get into the game. Lots of people already use Windows Media Player to organize their music, Xbox is a favorite console for many people, Windows Media Center 2005 is growing in popularity, and all of this works together with little effort. From the office computer running Windows XP, to the living room running MCE 2005, to the Xbox 360 in the den. They can all share files between them. And now with the Zune player you can take all those files to go. They just announced that Xbox live will support video downloads, including TV shows and movie rentals. I’m assuming, though I can’t confirm yet, that the content that you download via Xbox live will be available on MCE 2005. To me this seems like a better setup than Apple iTunes and iPod.

You can’t count Apple out. Apple has already previewed their set top box code named iTV. There are rumors of a iPod phone and new iPods. There is going to be a new OS with, I assume, a new iLife 07 package. So there are a lot of new things coming out to balance this constant release of new things by Microsoft.

Only time will tell if Microsoft can compete with Apple in the digital media business. Microsoft has the equipment, they will just need the users to join. I am excited about all these new things and will try to get my hands on as many as I can to let you know how they work.

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