Apple's stock is $504, down from a high this year of $705.The Motley Fool asks "Is Tim Cook The Next Steve Ballmer?" which is not meant as a complement. Bob Lefsetz, a blogger and music industry veteran, calls Tim Cook "charisma-challenged," and "he starts to speak and credibility goes out the window." He states that Apple is not telling its story as it should given the competitive threats of Samsung and Google.
Amazon has stepped up its competition against iTunes with a version of its MP3 store for Apple’s iPhones and iPod Touch devices. Long a distant second to Apple in digital music sales, Amazon has been moving aggressively over the last couple of years to attract music fans. It regularly discounts digital versions of hit albums and songs, something that has occasionally wrought some mischief on the Billboard charts. And its Cloud Player and Cloud Drive systems, introduced almost two years ago, let its customers back up their songs and stream them to virtually any device. (Apple, Google and others have their own versions of these so-called “lockers.”)
As to why anyone would buy music from iTunes is a complete mystery to me. Amazon is by far the better deal, and not because of prices but because you can move purchased music from one device to another without encountering this or that imposed barrier. Seriously, I hope Cook is the next Ballmer.