Microsoft (MSFT) continues its series of price-driven attack ads on Apple (AAPL) products.
This time, Microsoft is promoting the “Zune Pass” music rental service, which lets you download as much music as you want for a $15/month recurring fee. That’s more affordable than filling your new iPod with $30,000 worth of iTunes, the commercial states.
Well, OK. But is that the real problem people have with their MP3 players? We doubt anyone is actually spending $30,000 on music. Most of the music people have on their iPods is already purchased, ripped from a CD, or stolen from the Internet.
Moreover, while music subscriptions do make financial sense, they’re still a tough sell to consumers. Part of the problem is that people are used to owning music, and the idea of renting it is foreign. If Microsoft, Nokia (NOK), etc. can change peoples’ behaviour, that’ll be a victory over Apple. (If perhaps short-lived… Apple, of course, could roll out a music subscription service if it needed to, too.)
More specific to Microsoft, the bigger problem is that Zune Pass requires buying a Zune. And as Apple continues to improve its iPod platform — for instance, by extending its iPhone app platform to iPod touches — that’s making the Zune sell even tougher.
Update: Earlier, we noted a report suggesting that Microsoft would offer a new Zune in June. That is reportedly not true.