Bill Gates: ‘I’m not an iPod user’ | iLounge News


Bill Gates: ‘I’m not an iPod user’

Microsoft co-founder and chairman Bill Gates said Wednesday that while the iPod has been “a great success,” he doesn’t use the Apple music player and doubts claims made earlier this month that the majority of his employees are iPod owners.

In an interview with ABC News anchor Peter Jennings, Gates said: “I’m not an iPod user. I use the Creative Zen which is a fantastic product. That’s another space where, even what we have today, whether it’s iPod or the other things are only the start of what we’re gonna have in a few years. People are gonna want choices. These things are going to be smaller or better, cheaper.”

When asked about a recent Wired News article that reported about 80 percent of Microsoft employees who own a digital music player own an iPod, Gates said: “Well, I doubt that’s the case. Certainly, the iPod’s a great success.”

Gates went on to say that Apple “did a great job” with the iPod, but “what Apple’s done there is typically what they do.” He said: “It’s only their one music store, only their device. What we’re doing is providing choices.”

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buggy IE and bluescreened windows ones of the greatest choices Bill Gates has offered us…

Posted by frankthetank on February 16, 2005 at 6:41 PM (CST)


“It’s only their one music store, only their device. What we’re doing is providing choices.”

I *hate* this argument.  The only choice he is offering is to use Windows and their DRM.  What he really means is “What we’re doing is providing choices on how to get locked into Windows”.

Thank you, no.

Posted by m. sherman on February 16, 2005 at 7:21 PM (CST)


There’s the iPod Shuffle (two configurations), the iPod mini (5 colours), the iPod (also two configurations), and the iPod Photo (again, two configurations). Now tell me, Mr. Gates, since Apple offers 11 different iPod models, for most of which thousands of 3rd party accessories are avaliable, where do you think Apple isn’t providing enough choice? People aren’t forced to buy from iTMS either… Sheeesh, what’s up with these people…

Posted by Mainyehc on February 16, 2005 at 7:24 PM (CST)


Gates is so dumb.  People have tons of choices in music players and services.  iTMS and iPod is one of them.  He’s just needs to stop being a baby and admit that Apple beat M$ in digital music.

Posted by Tsunami Steve on February 16, 2005 at 7:35 PM (CST)


“What we’re doing is providing choices.”

Brought to you by the makers of Windows, Internet Explorer browser extensions, DirectX, etc. etc. etc.

Posted by Nagromme on February 16, 2005 at 8:06 PM (CST)


To be fair, what he’s saying is true, and I’m not sure everybody understands what he’s saying. The choices he’s describing are choices of mp3 players and music store. With Apple, you have to get an iPod and, if you want to download music legally, you have to get iTMS. On WMA, you can get many different brands, like iRiver, Creative, Samsung, etc, and a lot of music store choices too, like Napster and Walmart. If choices are what you want, WMA is the way to go. If you want it to work well and look nice, Apple is the way to go, even though they clearly have antitrust violations in an oddly Microsoft-like move. Real made Real Harmony to work with the iPod, to give people more choices, and Apple reengineered the iPod so it wouldn’t work, restricting choice. Choice is important, as it can lead to competitive pricing (ala Walmart’s music store), better quality, and better selection. Just my two cents.

Posted by catboy17 on February 16, 2005 at 8:43 PM (CST)


How ever, as a Linux and Mac user, anytime Bill Gates says “choice” it means nothing for me.

Posted by m. sherman on February 16, 2005 at 9:10 PM (CST)


“Apple is the way to go, even though they clearly have antitrust violations in an oddly Microsoft-like move”

Utterly and completely absurd… HOW are they violating antitrust rules? With the REAL thing? They are perfectly within their rights with the REAL hack to change the iPod so as not to allow the use of these songs. Explain to me how this is any different than Microsoft changing the file format of Word such that translators to Pages don’t work anymore? It is not the responsibility of the manufacturer to insure the ability of competitors to compete. Reverse engineering is certainly legal… but just because you succeeded in reverse engineering something doesn’t mean the company you ripped off is required to keep your solution viable.

Posted by beRaD on February 16, 2005 at 9:12 PM (CST)


In this situation, Microsoft is the one that provides more choices than Apple. Even though Microsoft only offers 1 DRM, now they have 2 possibilities… purchase and subscription model. now that’s one more possibility than what Apple offers.

Posted by Doggymon on February 16, 2005 at 9:13 PM (CST)


It is correct to say that Bill and M$ are providing us with “choices”  but only if you are refering to poor “choices”, “choices” that don’t work as well as the ipod, and a “choice” to ignore him. So few products you buy these days do everything they promise and do it well with little hassle. The ipod is one of these few products. All of the other mp3 players on the market may be superior in some category but are usually quite deficient as a whoel when compared to the ipod. I have a feeling that if it wasn’t for the ipod the harddrive mp3 player market would be much smaller.

Posted by amplifierfire on February 16, 2005 at 9:17 PM (CST)


Bill Gates is far from dumb.  You don’t get that rich by being dumb.

Posted by TennBikeBerk on February 16, 2005 at 10:44 PM (CST)


Hey all ya ipod users. I own a 40 gig Nomad Zen Xtra, not the ipod cause of price at the time, to friggin expensive if you ask me at that time, and still is a tad for my taste. Not saying I hate the ipod or anything, but I have compared the 2 mp3 players, and my Nomad sounds a bit better witht he same headphones. For instance, I litterally listened to the Crazy World album by Scorpions on both playings at the same bitrrate of 192 kbps. My Nomad had a clearer audio sound quality than the ipod did. I just have to say that the Nomad is a very, very, very good mp3 player and for a price of $230 for 40 gigs (that was the price of my Nomad at the Warehouse), it is one hell of a deal. People can say otherwise, but I thought I would like to put my input in. I have used my friend’s ipods and they’re nice too, but I am very content with my Nomad and would never switch, for my own reasons. I welcome yours. Bye guys.

Posted by JRM on February 16, 2005 at 10:47 PM (CST)


For Gates, choice, is like the old Ford Model T adage “any color you want, as long as it’s black.” For Billy Boy, it’s “use whatever device or program you want, as long as it works on Windows. Oh, and only our latest version of Windows XP. We’ll make you buy something new when we ship Longhorn in 2015.”

In his Windows world, everything must work his way. They control the DRM and the file format. They can control how or when you use it, and could even make it not work on older systems. Apple’s AAC is an open format (MP4). The only thing they control is the DRM, and as a company it is Apple can dictate what software will play it. Until Bill Gates and these other service start giving Mac a choice other than iTunes (and one that actually works better), they can just quite whining about it.

Posted by Chris VandeVenter on February 16, 2005 at 11:20 PM (CST)


I had a choice, and I chose the iPod.  Case closed.  I respect Mr. Gates for what he did for the computer community at it’s genesis (even Apple might have struggled without some early key Microsoft products).  However, in the last few years, I feel Gates’ contribution has become stagnant. 

Wake up, Bill…

Posted by Cameron T. on February 16, 2005 at 11:57 PM (CST)


Wait until someone looks in his closet and finds the glow of an iPod…

Posted by TheCritic on February 17, 2005 at 12:02 AM (CST)


“Utterly and completely absurd… HOW are they violating antitrust rules? ...It is not the responsibility of the manufacturer to insure the ability of competitors to compete.”

Hey dude, that is what Bill Gates was thinking when they bundled Internet Explorer and Windows Media Player… right before they were slapped with an antitrust suit from the Department of Justice. Clearly, you can think that way… all the way to court.

“People aren’t forced to buy from iTMS either”

Wrong.  While Apple may not have the rights for AAC, having the rights to the DRM is huge.  Do you see any other online stores that you can legally buy music from for your iPod?  Can you play your legally bought music from iTMS on any other Digital Audio Player?


The bottom line?  I dislike Microsoft just as much as the other guy, but you’re a moron if you don’t think Apple is as much “The MAN” as Microsoft is.  Apple is just as content to bully around people when they can, to obtain a higher profit margin—it’s only that they are dressed up in shiny white acrylic.

Even if it’s Microsoft, his argument is undeniable.  With Apple, there’s the iPod and iTMS.  With Microsoft, there is (some) choice.

Posted by NeoteriX on February 17, 2005 at 12:02 AM (CST)


I actually laughed out loud when I saw him on TV talking about “offering choices”. This from the man that created the word “Monopoly”! If you look that word up in any dictionary there’s a picture of Gates next to the description! What a joke.

He just hates being beat by anyone none the less Steve Jobs his archrival! Suck to be Bill right now. He has to eat his own words and his own hat! LOL!

Posted by FallN on February 17, 2005 at 12:06 AM (CST)


I think that is a fair call. All he is saying is that he doesnt’t use the mainstream iPod, which is fair enough. If you have a mucis player, why does it HAVE to be an iPod. Hell, i almost bought a Creative player myself, and the only reason i didn’t is because it wasn’t readily available and instead a bought an iPod because it was there. And yes i am happy with it, and Gates is happy with his Zen, so who cares.

Posted by Matty C on February 17, 2005 at 1:12 AM (CST)


What is making a choice? Choosing the player or choosing the type of file format of music that player can play? Like Mainyehc said, there are 11 different choices as long as they are iPods…...hehehehe. You can choose many other players, but the file format is WMA… that a choice?
I don’t think Bill Gates is dumb, but sometimes he does make dumb-sounding remarks

Posted by twum on February 17, 2005 at 1:13 AM (CST)


“Bill Gates is far from dumb. You don’t get that rich by being dumb.”

You get that rich by being lucky. Smarts has little to do with it.

Posted by Dingleberry on February 17, 2005 at 2:17 AM (CST)

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