Ever since Creative declared war on Apple late last year we've been expecting a little more of a street brawl between the two. Obviously being number one has made it easy for Steve Jobs to ignore everyone else, but fortunately Creative CEO Sim Wong Hoo (or as Stevie J. probably calls him, "Sim Wong Who?") wasn't above dishing out some salty fightin' words for us in honor of the launch of the iPod shuffle yesterday, calling it a "a big let-down" and "worse than the cheapest Chinese player." This stuff is too good not to blockquote:
We're expecting a good fight but they're coming out with something that's five generations older. It's our first generation MuVo One product feature, without display, just have a (shuffle feature). We had that — that's a four-year-old product. So I think the whole industry will just laugh at it, because the flash people — it's worse than the cheapest Chinese player. Even the cheap, cheap Chinese brand today has display and has FM. They don't have this kind of thing, and they expect to come out with a fight; I think it's a non-starter to begin with.
We know it's going to be hard for companies that have been selling flash-based MP3 players for years to see Apple swoop in and scoop up a large chunk of the market (loads of amnestic journalists probably won't help, either), but no matter whether you love 'em or loathe 'em, Apple simply has the design chops, marketing skills, and brand awareness to drive sales of a flash-based player that these other companies do not. If those other companies did, then by definition there wouldn't be a market opportunity for Apple here, would there?