Is the iPod going to take over the world?
There is plenty going for the iPod. It has great design, feels nice to hold and certainly has a bit of that "made by Apple" funkiness that those of us in the PC world grudgingly like.
But for all its appeal it is let down by few things. One is the software and the other is the Apple service. Now there are plenty of things that the Wintel world could learn from Apple – but something that the Wintel crowd have learned is that you need to live up to your promises.
On the software front – that means that "user friendly" is not just cute – but also open. iTunes needs to be more open to other software … it needs to be able to read in a range of data sources, it needs more flexibility in the way it manages my very important playlists and song files, and it needs be more tightly integrated into the Windows environment.
It also needs to be more user friendly. Apple needs to realise that they are now making a mass market system – not a niche technology item that is the darling of designers. And then they need to back this up with good support and friendly servicing. The number of people who have experienced rude Apple staff is on the rise. Each week I hear more stories about Apple’s failure to replace iPods that have cracked screens (no they were not dropped) or poor quality batteries.
If you want to take over the world – you also need to listen to what the world is telling you.