Microsoft Considered Music Partnership with Apple in 2003

Microsoftis Jim Allchin examined the experience involved with the portable MP3 players and the Microsoft software in 2003 and found it to be terrible. This was revealed during the Comes vs. Microsoft antitrust trial in Iowa last week in an e-mail Jim Allchin sent to his consumer media executive. The story was told at Australiais Computerworld site on Monday.

In an e-mail Jim Allchin wrote to Amir Majidmehr on November 13, 2003, he said, "Apple is just so far ahead. How can we get the [independent hardware vendors] to create something that is competitive with the iPod? I looked at the Dell system and that is not close either."

Amir Majidmehr replied that Microsoft planned to offer incentives to the partners to improve their products, including cash. Ironically, this is reminiscent of the 1990s when, before Steve Jobs returned to Apple, Apple paid some developers to port what was considered important software to the Mac.

In an e-mail, Mr. Allchin replied, "I think I should talk with [Apple CEO Steve] Jobs. Right now, I think I should open up a dialog (sic) for support of the iPod. Unless something changes, the iPod will drive people away from [Windows Media Player]."