Microsoft’s Jim Allchin Trashed Windows Media-Based Music Players in November 2003

Todd Bishop:

A November 2003 e-mail by Windows chief Jim Allchin, made public today as part of the company’s Iowa antitrust trial, sheds new light on the frustration that the company felt with its digital music device partners, before deciding to come out with its own Zune music player and service to challenge Apple’s iPod.

I almost feel bad for Allchin for these emails that are coming out as a result of this lawsuit. In this one, he talks about his experience with a top-of-the-line Creative player, and pretty much trashes the entire experience, from the player itself (“I mean it is ugly, not smooth to the touch (hard edges and uncomfortable to hold, etc.), fragile (easy to break), the controls are difficult and they hurt your finger if you use the ‘jog’ dial much at all”) to the software to the synching.

He concludes by writing, “I think I should talk with Jobs. Right now, I think I should open up a dialog for support of the iPOD. Unless something changes, the iPOD will drive people away from WMP.” The emails are from about a month after Apple’s first version of iTunes for Windows.

(Allchin sure has a weird sense of capitalization.)

Sunday, 21 January 2007