Music industry failed to embrace Zune, says former Microsoft man

By | Published on Tuesday 15 May 2012


A former Microsoft executive has blamed the music industry for the failure of the Zune player, the IT giant’s attempt to take on Apple’s iPod, according to Tech Radar.

Noting how the Zune failed while Microsoft’s Xbox enjoyed big successes in the gaming space, Robbie Bach, who, when heading up Microsoft’s entertainment division, oversaw both product lines, told the Northwest Entrepreneur Network event in Seattle: “It’s not like we didn’t try but – and I don’t know how to say this politely – the music industry just didn’t get it. They just didn’t figure out that being dependent on Apple was bad for them. And they were so hooked on the drug of what Apple was supplying them, that they couldn’t see past that to realise that they needed something else to actually drive their business. The label business, the music industry, has never recovered from that”.

However, Bach did concede that the Zune was possibly also too little too late in the short-lived MP3 player market. He added, Tech Radar says, that the portable music market was “already leaving when we started”, and that “we just weren’t brave enough, honestly, and we ended up chasing Apple with a product that actually wasn’t a bad product, but it was still a chasing product, and there wasn’t a reason for somebody to say, oh, I have to go out and get that thing”.