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Thursday, July 06, 2006

Microsoft Launching iPod Rival Before Christmas

Microsoft (MSFT) will start selling a wireless digital music and video player to compete with Apple's iPod by Christmas, sources close to the matter said on Wednesday.

The new player, which Microsoft Corp. has been touting to record companies in the last few weeks, will let users download music and videos over the air, according to one source, a feature which would give it an edge over the iPod.

Microsoft Corp. has also been showing a new media software, developing an application akin to Apple Computer Inc.'s iPod/iTunes integrated ecosystem, according to another source.

Record companies are expected to be receiving prototypes to test in the coming weeks, said the first source. The sources said Microsoft will be throwing significant marketing dollars behind the launch.

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