June 24, 2002
7:00 AM   Subscribe

Celebrate, Windows users, you too can use the world's best MP3 player, with the final release of XPod today, which gives iPod compatiblity to Windows.
And this is not the only option, ephPod does the same thing, but does require you to buy a copy of MacOpener first.
Didn't Apple say they were coming out with their own Windows drivers for iPod eventually?
posted by Mwongozi (19 comments total)
D'oh! Of course, it's called XPlay, and not XPod.

My bad...
posted by Mwongozi at 7:01 AM on June 24, 2002

ephPod works perfect once you upgrade your iPod to 1.1 firmware.
posted by ejoey at 7:07 AM on June 24, 2002

Poor Apple. It's an interesting paradox for them. Should they spread the news about the versatility of their hardware, or does this news hurt their argument?
posted by ColdChef at 7:08 AM on June 24, 2002

Given that Apple are currently offering $100 off if you buy a new iMac and iPod together, I really don't think Apple will be promoting Windows compatibility any time soon.
posted by Mwongozi at 7:14 AM on June 24, 2002

i don't understand apple's argument for keeping this device mac only. i think it's ridiculous, actually. as a windows user, i'd love to buy an ipod. however, would i buy a mac to do so? nope. i just bought a different mp3 player instead.
posted by dobbs at 8:53 AM on June 24, 2002

so would the ipod be able to act as a portable hard drive for PCs as well?
posted by lotsofno at 9:00 AM on June 24, 2002

I heard something about a Toshiba copy (couldn't find it on their site). The article (msnbc) said it has a navigation wheel and a 5 gig hard drive (apparently, Toshiba makes the hard drives for the iPod). It also uses USB 2. I don't know if it's shiny though.
posted by password at 9:02 AM on June 24, 2002

Link to a review of the Toshiba player

Yep it's shiny and though a little bigger since it's a removable 5GB drive.
posted by bitdamaged at 10:16 AM on June 24, 2002

I'll take the Toshiba one in the iPod case please. The Toshiba case looks like a very cheap knock off.
posted by riffola at 10:37 AM on June 24, 2002

It's not pretty, but I love my Archos Jukebox, which doubles as a USB hard drive. I bought the six gig model way back when, and then upgraded the HD to 30 gigs without voiding the warranty. There's even open-source firmware you can use with it, and a couple active online communities.
posted by hootch at 10:56 AM on June 24, 2002

Don't get me wrong, the iPod is shiny and cute, and has a good interface design. But for the money, it's totally outpriced itself. You can get far more storage and capabilities with players such as the RioRiot and Archos Jukebox. I'm not an all out Apple hater, but all they have done is made a "pretty" mp3 player. Oh, and how are you suppose to carry that thing? You can't clip it anywhere and the silver back portion gets all scratched up! 8P
posted by clang at 11:44 AM on June 24, 2002

Well, it looks like Apple still might offer Windows support. More evidence is the fact that the above special ends this month.
posted by ry at 11:45 AM on June 24, 2002

A few responses:

1. It's firewire. The speed makes a difference.
2. Sure it's pretty. It's also the smallest 5 gigger on the market. It makes a difference (and drives up cost).
3. At this point it's Mac only because of the benefits you get from tight hardware/software integration. It's easy to design something for two types of setups (OSX with firewire or OS9 with firewire) versus Windows, which has so many different drivers/hardware setups/software setups to deal with that development gets bogged down.

People already looking to switch see solutions like the iPod and realize that there truly are differences between platforms. That sells computers, even if it doesn't sell iPods.
posted by jragon at 1:06 PM on June 24, 2002

LotsofNo: using MacOpener or MacDrive lets the iPod act as a portable hard drive. It does get very very hot after a few gigs of file transfers though.

And also, the PC software actually lets you share your mp3s both ways, unlike the Mac iTunes software (to the best of my limited Mac knowledge). I went over to my friend's house and all we could do was dump 4 gigs mp3s from his Mac to the pod.
posted by ejoey at 1:49 PM on June 24, 2002

The biggest obstacle to iPod success isn't just lack of Windows functionality, its price. A 20 gig Rio Riot or a 20 gig Nomad Jukebox cost over a hundred dollars less than the 10 gig iPod, retail. While I absolutely love the look, feel, and design of the iPod (using it is a breeze), I can't reconcile that with the price when I can get so much more capacity with a Windows compatible player.

I really want to get an iPod, but I won't, because they are still too expensive compared to similar products. Plus, I would have to pay extra for Windows support, since I do not own an Apple computer. Apple has never been able to compete pound for pound with the PC side of the market, when it comes to prices. I guess I'm not part of the niche market that they appeal to.
posted by insomnyuk at 1:54 PM on June 24, 2002

I really want to get an iPod, but I won't, because they are still too expensive compared to similar products.

Interestingly, the only similar product, the Toshiba linked above, is the same price as an iPod. The Toshiba is only sold in Japan right now, so it's possible that they'll drop the price when (if?) the player comes to the US, but I can't see why...
posted by Llama-Lime at 2:32 PM on June 24, 2002

ejoey, you can use the iPod as a portable hard drive as well.

From Apple: Who knows, you might also find yourself storing documents, files and applications on your iPod in FireWire disk mode.
posted by password at 3:16 PM on June 24, 2002

I'd agree the iPod costs too much. I'm a card-carrying, die hard Apple freak, and as hot as the iPod is, it's too much money. When they brought out the 10 gig model they should've dropped the price of the 5-gigger. Hopefully the price points will adjust when they shift up to a 20 gig model.

Now here's an interesting question: The last software revision added a 'contacts' feature. Will Apple continue to add PDA-like features to the iPod (whose brand name carries no musical connotations, of course), or will they flat-out release a PDA? Presumably they have other iPod-like digital gadgets in the pipeline.
posted by D at 3:37 PM on June 24, 2002

I love the way people talk about "obstacles to iPod success" like no-one was actually buying them. Apple have sold over 200,000 of the things!
posted by pascal at 6:14 PM on June 24, 2002

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