Stung by iPod Success, Gates Promises Better Competition

On Friday, Microsoft chairman Bill Gates said that his company wasn't satisfied with the 20 percent of the digital music market that Microsoft and its partners currently own. He promises that Microsoft will rebound against Apple Computer's iPod, which currently dominates that market.

"Apple has done a fantastic job with the iPod," Gates said during a talk Friday with minority students. "\[But\] I don't think what's out on the market today is the final answer. Between us and our partners, you can expect some pretty hot products coming out over the next few years." Gates complimented Apple's success with the iTunes Music Store, which currently offers songs that play only on the iPod. However, Gates hinted that his company was working with its hardware and services partners to offer a level of integration and ease of use that only Apple currently offers to consumers.

According to reports, Microsoft is working on its own iPod competitor. However, I can confirm rumors that the software giant isn't sure whether it will actually sell the device or simply use it as an example of what's possible for its partners. On Friday, Gates said nothing about a Microsoft device but instead reiterated his company's current strategy, which is to let its hardware partners create Windows-compatible devices.

TAGS: Windows 8
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