NYT: Zune Sales Coming From Anti-iPod, Apple Haters

Aug 9th, 2008 | By | Category: iPods & Portable Media Players

Zune OriginalsThe New York Times today suggests that the Zune‘s sales are mainly coming from people that hate Apple and are anti-iPod:

The most salient feature of the Zune seems to be that it’s not an iPod. Jesse Thorn, host of the public-radio show (and popular podcast) The Sound of Young America, is a Zune proponent, praising, for instance, its ability to sync wirelessly with a computer. Plus he was able to update his first-generation Zune with the improved software and firmware designed for the newer version – in contrast to Apple’s charging iPod Touch owners for upgrades, he makes a point of saying.

Turns out Thorn has always resisted buying an iPod, having been put off initially by the price and later by the ever-growing number of “self-satisfied people carrying a ubiquitous object.”That sounds hostile, but Thorn is actually quite good-humored. On “Jordan Jesse Go,” another (less formal) podcast he co-hosts, he and his friend Jordan Morris regularly joke about the song-swap feature, inventing the term “rocket up your Zunehole” to describe the practice. Thorn also seems to take pleasure in examples of product-design oddities, like the inclusion of brown among the device’s first-generation color choices.

This is not the attitude you associate with fanatical brand devotion. Similarly, Julia Sliwinski, a media strategist in New York, likes the Zune her boyfriend gave her but has never detected the kind of cult-product passion that attached to the Rio Karma MP3 player she used to own. She hasn”t swapped songs with any other Zune owners because, she says, “I don’t know any.” Asked directly, she admits that “I probably wouldn’t buy an iPod,” as she is “a little bit anti-Apple.”

The New York Times makes its case with annecdotal evidence, but it’s clear that, for some, the biggest “feature” of the Zune is that it’s not from Apple and it’s not what everybody else is buying.

Tags: ,

9 Responses to “NYT: Zune Sales Coming From Anti-iPod, Apple Haters”

  1. bob e says:

    I despise anything Apple and refuse to buy products which begin in the letter ‘i’. For me – Zune is the answer to my MP3 wishes. Love my Zune 80!

  2. Rob Greenlee says:

    James, It is not just Apple haters who are buying Zunes, it is people who like to think different and who want a player device that is has FM radio, subscription music service and does a great job with podcasts. It is a complete portable media player device with a much more creative looking client media store called “Zune Marketplace Media Player” software that sync’s wireless and wired with Zune player. Zune deserves a fair shake in the market and in this blog. Thanks, Rob Greenlee

  3. Bob says:

    Um, wow…you added two original sentences to that….wouldn’t a simple link have sufficed?

  4. Well historically I’ve had several iPods – but my last iPod died at the 11th hour (month in fact, actually in the 10th) and AppleDon’tCare well, didn’t care, and the fact it took 2 years to get my podcast onto iTunes, whereas Zune got me on within months.

    I know what I might be buying next…

  5. Damien says:

    I’ll take the Zune’s podcast management features over the iPod any day of the week, thank you kindly. My purchasing decision had absolutely nothing to do with the fanboy mentality of many Apple users and everything to do with what they pride themselves on, a well designed product. For my needs that would be the Zune.

  6. James Lewin says:

    Rob – I noted that that the NYT is basing its argument on anecdotal evidence, but that the anti-ipod sentiment was clearly a factor for some buyers. See bob e’s comment!

  7. Tavisd says:

    I think the Zune stands on it’s own. FYI – I am Microsoft fanboy and not and Apple fan at all, although I bought my wife a iPod classic and a shuffle because she had to have one. I love my Zune 80 and pack it full with Podcasts (audio and video) and pictures. I really don’t listen to music on it much. Case in point – There are many kids in our area that got the Zune (junior high and high school are full of Zunes) and use it for the social aspect of it. MS has a great opportunity here. This ties in with their culture of social digital media. Most people (sheeple) buy iPod because thats what their friend has or that’s what they see and not because it’s a better product. Apple got there first and has with it the Pop culture following. I hope Zune keeps going there is a lot of potential for growth and Apple market to eat. Tavisd

  8. AJ says:

    I detest IPods.

    First, there’s that stupid wheel thing. Try playing with that whilst you’re driving on a rough bush track. Impossible. Then there’s the display that can barely be read in daylight. What were they thinking when they desgined that? That we all live in caves or are stuck endlessly on the London Metro in semi darkness?

    And then there is the McBlandness of the product, to say nothing of the apparent disposability of the product and utter lack of service from Apple.

    I have a Sony Walkman Mp3. It’s purple, you can read the screen in bright outback Australian sunlight and there is no f$%king wheel.

  9. Izi Bradford says:

    I am a major anti-apple person. I-tunes is one of the worst things i evr used! Zune is like the underground mp3 fighting the corporate I-pod. I’m a proud zune owner and love it!

    PS: Zune HD is coming next year

Leave a Reply