News.com has published a very good interview with Apple CEO Steve Jobs. The interview was timed to coincide with yesterdayis release of QuickTime 6 (see also TMOis analysis of QT 6), as well as the announcement that the eMac would be made available to retail consumers, and covers those issues, MPEG-4, open standards versus proprietary technologies, Appleis retail strategy, and even a question about Dell in the education market. Some samples from the interview:
Q: Is your release of the QuickTime 6 preview a sign that licensing issues for MPEG-4 have been worked out?
A: The licensing stuff is getting worked out. It isnit totally worked out yet. Every "i" is not dotted and every "t" is not crossed, but itis getting there. I have a lot of confidence it will. This is too important not to get worked out. Weill be shipping QuickTime 6 as part of Jaguar, our next major release of Mac OS X, which ships later this summer. I expect stuff will be worked out by then.
Q: Whatis so great about MPEG-4?
A: [...] It blows away MP3 (and) Windows Media. And it also is the audio format adopted by all satellite radio (companies). So this is gathering a tremendous amount of steam, and I think everybody is going to be cutting over to MPEG-4, with the possible exception of Microsoft, which is going to try and push its Corona technology that comes out later this year. They havenit gone into a preview or beta mode yet, but they said they were going to release it sometime this year.
Q: Letis switch to eMac, which you developed for the education market, but which you now will sell to anyone.
A: When we announced it was just going to be for the education market, we got beat up by a lot of customers who said, "This is a phenomenal system. Why canit I buy it?" [...] We can build more than we thought; we are in the business of selling computers to people who want to buy them and weive got a lot of customers who say they want to buy this product. Why shouldnit we sell it to them? So we decided to change our plan...I think itis going to do pretty well. Weill find out.
There is a lot more than what we quoted, and we recommend the interview as a very good read.