A new survey conducted by ABI Research has shown that many prospective MP3 player buyers — even owners of iPods — would be likely to choose Microsoft's Zune player. 1725 teenage and adult US residents were asked whether they planned to buy an MP3 player in the next 12 months. Of those responding that they were likely to do so, 58% of those identifying themselves as existing iPod owners and 59% of those who owned other brands said they would be "somewhat likely" or "extremely likely" to choose a Microsoft Zune player over an iPod or another brand of MP3 player."Our conclusion," says principal analyst Steve Wilson, "is that iPod users don't display the same passionate loyalty to iPods that Macintosh users have historically shown for their Apple products." Only 15% of iPod owners said they were "not very likely" or "not at all likely" to choose Zune. link here
These kind of statements P*ss me off and are completely misleading, but they're everywhere and you have to watch out for them. Firstly, the piece fails to tell us how many respondents actually planned to replace their music player in the next 12 months. Given that iPods retail at $200/300, its not the kind of device I would expect to have a rapid replacement cycle. This data is important to ascertain the significance and value of what comes next.
Secondly, what does "somewhat likely" really mean? I may be somewhat, kind of, possibly likely, maybe if i get a good deal or discount, perhaps almost interested in buying it? I suspect the ratio of "somewhat likely" to "extremely likely" is heavily weighted towards those seated firmly on the fence.
Finally, Mr Wilsons conclusion is flawed. How can you make a statement on iPod loyalty based on showing an audience a picture of a product that hasn't even launched, and that most haven't even heard about.
Friday rant over.