Microsoft slams HP's iTunes move

HP's move to release an own-branded digital-music player based on Apple's iPod – and to ship iTunes pre-installed on all HP PCs – has angered Microsoft. General manager of Microsoft's Windows digital media division David Fester has suggested that iTunes' emerging dominance would be bad for consumers, because it would limit them to the iPod. He told journalists at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas: "Windows is about choice - you can mix and match software and music player stuff. We believe you should have the same choice when it comes to music services."

Fester also said that HP would confuse its customers because the company supports several other Microsoft media products that are not compatible with the iPod, including its Windows Media Centre software. According to the New York Times, Dell also suggests HP is making a mistake. A Dell spokesman said: "We expect competition and it's good for customers. Over time, however, customers will want industry standard choices.'' HP believes that it is better positioned than any other company to bridge the gap between Apple and Windows. Fiorina told the Times: "The next big thing isn't the next gizmo or killer app or hot box. Customers want all this to work together and they want a seamless approach. We're very much going to make sure that the Microsoft and Apple worlds work together. That's part of the power we bring to this thing."

News source: Macworld | UK

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