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For six years, the Internet Nexus served as my technology blog, but I've since started blogging at the SuperSite Blog instead. If you're looking for the blog, please head there. --Paul

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Is Apple copying Microsoft?

Robert Scoble asks the right question, but about the wrong software:
Steve, your UI looks an awful lot like Windows Media Center. Almost a total copy. So, who is copying whom?

If anyone ever tells me again that Microsoft only copies Apple I’m gonna puke.
He's talking about Apple's software for iTV, which looks a lot like Apple's Front Row and only a little like Media Center. (Now, THIS looks a lot like Media Center.)

But I think it's pretty obvious that iTunes 7 is stealing a few ideas from the Microsoft playbook. Features like a categorized source list, automatic album art, and, most importantly, the new visual browsing paradigm where album art shows up in the list view, were all done on Windows Media Player first. (Actually, so were integrated movie experiences, but whatever.)

I've often said that Apple copies Microsoft as much as the reverse, but I'd also like to point out one important fact here: As good as WMP 11 is, iTunes 7 is just gorgeous. It's so much more professional looking than WMP that it's hard not to laugh when you compare the two. So yeah, Apple copied Microsoft. No surprise there. But Apple also improved on the experience dramatically. No surprise there either. That's why they're number one and Microsoft is fumbling around trying to make their own MP3 player right now.
[ Posted at 8:10 PM | Permalink ]


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