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"Apple takes back the copycat title"

updated 10:55 pm EDT, Wed September 20, 2006

Apple taking from MS?

A new blog entry "Apple takes back the copycat title" looks at Apple's newly introduced CoverFlow technology in iTunes and its iTV media hub/center project due early next year, which it says have been around in Microsoft products for sometime. Referring to the forthcoming iTV media center, blogger Ed Bott writes: "So, let me get this straight. I can pay $300 for a device that allows me to play content from a computer located elsewhere in the house. Cool! It's about time someone invented a "media extender" like this. Oh. Wait. Microsoft already did. I have three Media Center extenders in this house, two first-generation models and an Xbox 360. On any of these extenders, I can play my entire music collection (browsing it by album cover) through my home theater system using a wired or wireless connection to my Media Center computer. But unlike Apple's device (which won't be available until January 2007) the Xbox 360 also streams live or recorded TV and downloaded high-definition content. It plays games and DVDs in full 5.1 surround sound."

Meanwhile, at least one other company claims--in its "Steven Jobs? More Like Stealing Jobs" blog entry--that Apple's iTV media hub is a repackaged version of their product announced earlier this year: "Nero has many writings about how Mircosoft has taken our Putz concepting and made it their Zune. But I was saddening to see that now Steven Jobs of Apple is also taken our VideoTron concepting and made it their iTV!! For those not remembering, Durosport announced our VideoTron back in June. Video on the TV! We are coming up with that idea, not Steven Jobs!"




by MacNN Staff

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  1. bsaxton

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Sure, but...

    ...the appeal of Apple's products is that they take relatively little set up. Anything Microsoft makes seems to be difficult to get to work right. The Apple stuff usually "just works" for most moderately-techie people.

  1. tomodachi

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Concepting

    Man, he really loves his progressive forms! Batta-bing!

  1. Deal

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    GIVE ME A BREAK!

    Using your Xbox as an iTV, what a crappy comparison. I could grow flowers in my car too, doesn't make it a greenhouse!

    As for the DuroSport, it doesn't do half of what the iTV does.

    Somebody show me a device that will play all the media from your computer using a simple remote and a easy and great looking menu system. THAT'S WHAT iTV DOES!

    It's hard to believe this writer gets paid to be a troll...

  1. 1zero

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Well..

    Apple didn't invent the MP3 player, but they have the best and coolest one out there. His copycat points are not valid IMO

  1. Elektrix

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Indeed....

    I think people misunderstand the difference between a company that simply copies someone else, and one that actually improves on something else. Copying is basically when a company looks at another product and says "Make our product work like that and look like that!" (something MS has a history of doing with Windows, for example..... it's well known that most of the history of Windows has been based on the basic desire by Bill Gates for Windows to 'work like a Mac').

    Improving though is when a company takes something that does exist in some rough form (i.e. the GUI, MP3 players, media center expanders, etc.) and comes up with a better way to do it. The reason the "copycat" label doesn't work on Apple is that for the most part, Apple has looked at things that were rough or not quite very good, and come up with much better versions of them. In MS's case, for the most part, they have basically been known more for creating, at best, close imitations of existing products.

  1. 11schest

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    the bottom line

    by reading that blog article - I'd say that durosport is just jealous. think about this one. I agree with elektrix - it's not copying, it's more like INNOVATING! sound familiar?

  1. 11schest

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    wait a minute...

    By the way.... where do these people get stealing jobs from? What jobs is Jobs stealing?

  1. benhur

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    well

    I think he has a good point but others here are right Apple did improve upon the technology. However, though it may not work as smoothly and not meet it's potential, I do with Apple had a "Media Center" or would work with the Sony PS3. So many possibilites there. Apple is really limiting itself with the iTV as it was previewed.

  1. LouZer

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    bah!

    it's not copying, it's more like INNOVATING! sound familiar?

    Innovation isn't taking an idea and then making it a little better. Its coming up with a better idea, period. "Oh, look! Its got a better menuing system, and it might 'just work'. They're so innovative at apple!"

    Somebody show me a device that will play all the media from your computer using a simple remote and a easy and great looking menu system. THAT'S WHAT iTV DOES!

    First off, you can't show even one, since iTV isn't a real product, its a product in development. (A couple of years ago I'm sure people were talking about how 'Asteroid' was going to change everything and how nothing around was like it. Except, of course, it never was released. Hey, wait! Maybe this is Asteroid!)

    Second, since its still in development, any thoughts on how 'great' it is (or will be), or how easy to use, or anything else, is just pure supposition.

    Third, its not going to be able to play ALL the media on your computer. There's lots of video that Quicktime just chokes on, which means FrontRow can't play and truly doubtful it will magically work with iTV. There's also lots of audio formats/files that it won't play. If its like FrontRow, it won't support VOB files (ripped DVDs).

    But if you mean by "plays all the media on your computer" you actually mean "plays all the Apple supported and authorized media on your computer", then your statement will hold (but, then, of course, since Apple won't license Fairplay, no one else can make such a device, can they?)

    Finally, the theory that it will magically 'just work' completely bypasses the fact that you'll need to install software on your computer, and make sure your media files are organized and stored in Apple's suite of applications or specific folders (don't be thinking about storing those movies outside the iTunes or Movies folder, that's just a big no-no!). But, I'm sure we're not supposed to mention that because everyone already has their media ordered and structured and formatted the way Apple wants you to (oh, and if you come out with the "But apple's apps make it so easy to do this, you don't even have to try to get it there" then you may as well toss the iTV and just by a mac mini and use FrontRow.

    And, and they didn't steal the coverflow idea. They bought it from another company (sure, they might have stolen the idea, but that's besides the point!)

  1. beeble

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    re: well

    "Apple is really limiting itself with the iTV as it was previewed"

    Do you or anyone else on the plant seriously believe that Apple released all the features of this device the other day? Heck no. They are just letting the market know that they have a tv device in the pipeline. You can take it to the bank that they have saved the wow factor stuff for the dramatic unveiling, like they always do. All these comparisons are meaningless because they are just assuming that iTV will only be able to do what Apple has so far confirmed when the reality is that this is the tip of the iceberg.

    Come on. You all know Apple. You know this the way they work. Think people. Think!

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