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Did Windows Media Player finally displace Winamp??

Hi,

I was reading (actually re-reading) Joel's article on Converting Capital in to Software that works. Link here: http://www.joelonsoftware.com/articles/fog0000000074.html

In his article, he makes a point that power of bundling [4th Paragraph in his article] is not really very effective, citing example of 'Winamp'. Yes, in around 2000, certainly everyone I knew was using Winamp and no one used WMP [Windows Media Player]. 

But let's look at current scenario. When Winamp did major screw up with their v3 and then tried to correct it through Winamp v5, inbetween this process, I think they lost lot of users. These days, everyone I know uses WMP. I, myself, use WMP only. Earlier I used to laugh on those guys who used something other than Winamp .[Say musicmatch jukebox, sonic, real player etc.]

So, what do you think has lead to demise of Winamp?
Was it their complete re-write of v3 or was it the bundling of WMP, and WMP was slowly getting better with each release? [I feel that it's combined result of both.]
Do you think that Winamp would have been ahead right now if they had not done major re-write and kept going at the pace they were going, till 2.xx??

What media player do you use now?? Do you install Winamp these days??

JD
http://jdk.phpkid.org

JD
Thursday, July 08, 2004

I don't use Winamp, but I just installed it for my Dad the other day, so he could listen to Shoutcast stations.

I didn't even check if WMP could play them (Shoutcast stations), can it?

Wayne
Thursday, July 08, 2004

I never used Shoutcast, so I don't know!

JD

JD
Thursday, July 08, 2004

I don't use WMP for anything but video clips.  I actually prefer iTunes for radio, and WinAmp for Mp3's.

I don't know anyone personally who prefers to use WMP.

Clay Whipkey
Thursday, July 08, 2004

> These days, everyone I know uses WMP. I, myself, use WMP only.

Please forgive me, of all the MS products I have been able to miraculously figure out--Windows Media Player is by far the weirdest interface ever. It's as if a patent lawyer designed it, he just figured--let's make sure we aren't stepping on any toes and make it match 27 usability patents. I am sure there are a lot of people who grew up with it but unfortunately it's sad that all of us Winamp bigots have to live with weird default players like WMP.

Li-fan Chen
Thursday, July 08, 2004

Why did I leave Winamp?

I was tired of squinting. I didn't like the playlist feature that much either (this was all pre v3). I also wanted a music library type feature. I switched to MMJ and eventualy to WMP.

Chris Altmann
Thursday, July 08, 2004

I used to be a die-hard WinAmp'er. Two things made me switch to WMP:
1) WinAmp 3 was a disaster. The program was larger and slower to start up and seek around my MP3 collection. Also, most importantly, it lost the ability to show a "fire"-style (I think; it was one of the modes I really liked to use) graphic equalizer, something they haven't even fixed in WinAmp5.

2) I found that most ShoutCast stations are crappy and Yahoo! Launch! is far better.

Captain McFly
Thursday, July 08, 2004

VLC: videolan client: http://www.videolan.org/

One of the coolest open source projects out there.  Plays about every format I've encountered.  And plays from sources most players cannot deal with, like a muticast MPEG-2 transport.  Uses DeCSS to not honor any limits on DVD limitations.  Will transcode transport formats (like DVD to transport) Very nice - you can decrypt a DVD and then broadcast it on your intranet.

hoser
Thursday, July 08, 2004

New features going into VLC: 

Release: VLC 0.7.2 (2004-05-2121 May 2004)  This new release of VLC media player features improved interfaces with support for embedded video outputs, new formats support (H261, CMML, H264, Theora alpha3, ...),

da bomb.

hoser
Thursday, July 08, 2004

"Tired of squinting" -- that sums up my reason for dumping Winamp as well.

Welcome to the next century, where people have 1600x1200 and higher screen resolutions and don't want their media player postage stamp sized because it uses a fixed size skinning system.

I think Joel's point still stands, the problem isn't that Microsoft beat Winamp with bundling as much as it is Winamp just dropped the ball.

Mr Fancypants
Thursday, July 08, 2004

"I think Joel's point still stands, the problem isn't that Microsoft beat Winamp with bundling as much as it is Winamp just dropped the ball. "

Agreed.  Microsoft has the advantage that they can keep getting another bite at the apple.  Thier player was bundled (I think) so new users kept getting a chance to try it.  Once it was better than Winamp, they beat Winamp.

But once Winamp lost one "round" with M$, they never get another chance because they can't get thier product in front of customers at zero incremental cost.

E.g., Microsoft gets to fight 10 rounds and only has to win ONE round to win the match.
The competitor (ISV, in MS parlance) only has to lose one round to lose the match.

Not saying this is unfair. It's just a fact.

Mr. Analogy
Thursday, July 08, 2004

It's funny that this is just like the browser wars for me. I never used WinAmp because I hated the interface in the same way that I never used Netscape because of it's look and feel. In both case MS won for me based on design, pure and simple.

JWA
Thursday, July 08, 2004

From the initial response, I thought that I was the only 'geek' who left Winamp! But glad to know that I am not alone! ;)

I think MS need to make product 'passable' and whoa no one cares about any other product.

For me, I was big fan of Winamp because I just loved DFX plugin which was simply incredible. There were other numerous plugins which made using Winamp a very rich experience. Compared to that I feel that WMP is very much limited. But what the heck, I want to double click mp3 file and hear the song from speakers and WMP does it okie..

JD

JD
Thursday, July 08, 2004

I use Winamp 5 for audio, and it's pretty nice. I don't like WMP, and I replaced it with Media Player Classic, which I use for all video files.

One thing about Winamp 5 I don't like is how long it takes to start up. :(

sid6581
Thursday, July 08, 2004

Never mind my last comment, I upgraded to 5.03c, and it seems to start up much faster now. Goodie.

sid6581
Thursday, July 08, 2004

+1 for VLC...

Windows media is not the greatest media s/w. I was using winamp till I switched to itunes.

itunes ROCKS!

Prakash S
Friday, July 09, 2004

I don't know anybody who uses WMP for music.  A majority of them use it for video, though.  I'd say that half of my friends use Winamp for music, and the other half use iTunes, with iTunes usage growing and Winamp shrinking.

Personally, I use iTunes for music, and Winamp 2.9x for video.  Occaisionally I use Media Player Classic for the newer video formats like .OGM that have switchable subtitles and video tracks.  (I watch a lot of downloaded Asian movies and animation)

iTunes has a really excellent interface that's light years ahead of the competition if you have a large collection of music, in my opinion.  Making manual playlists and automatically-generated smart playlists ("show me all music I've imported in the past month but haven't listened to yet") is a pleasure because it's so easy to do.  Great disc-burning capability, and it even burns DVDs.  It can even span your job across multiple DVDs, which was a godsend when I wanted to back up 70GBs of mp3s.  :P

The only disadvantage of iTunes is that it's more of a memory hog and slower to launch, but on my Athlon 2500 and my Athlon 3400, it's not enough of a difference to care about.

Winamp is nice for small collections, but its library feature seriously sucks for larger collections.  You can find a single song quickly, but making playlists is just retarded compared to iTunes.  Only iTunes gets it "right" in my book.  Of course, that's a subjective opinion, but iTunes does everything I want, exactly the way I want it to work.  One of the best pieces of software I've EVER used.

John Rose
Friday, July 09, 2004

Winamp + DFX is still the best combination for me.

j. Goldstein
Friday, July 09, 2004

I've avoided wmp for mp3's because the playlists are opaque and hard/impossible to migrate or copy.

I've avoided wmp for avi's because it's very unstable and frequently can't play the video properly (sometimes not at all). No idea why, because presumably the other avi players use the same codec's

Chris Welsh
Friday, July 09, 2004

WMP playlists aren't entirely opaque:

http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url=/library/en-us/wmplay/mmp_sdk/playlistobject.asp?frame=true

Chris Altmann
Friday, July 09, 2004

Want to know why I use WinAmp instead of WMP?  Look at your CPU usage when playing a simple MP3 on either.

Joshua A. Schaeffer
Sunday, July 11, 2004

Well, I used to hate Windows Media Player because it took a lot of screen real estate. I'm still not very fond of it. I am a bit annoyed that the two don't know how to play nice with each other and keep stealing each other's file associations. My family had a few wars about whether to use WinAmp or WMP with our new WinXP laptop.

I've tried WinAmp 3 for a while, but ran screaming back to WinAmp 2. Haven't tried WinAmp 5 yet, but WinAmp works for me.

I'm using Linux most of the time now, where I'm using the excellent WinAmp 2 clone, XMMS ( http://www.xmms.org/ )
. However, I'm using xmms on Linux and WinAmp on Windows differently. In Linux I have a separate virtual workspace with xmms to the right and a tabbed konqueror window to the left, and I drag files from konq to xmms to play them. On Windows (where I don't have virtual workspaces), I'm using the right-click+"Play in Winamp"/"Enqueue in Winamp" paradigm.

The reason I'm not using the Windows way in Linux, is because double clicking an mp3 causes a zombie task to appear at the taskbar (it's a KDE bug or misbehaviour) and I did not get to create a Konqueror menu entry for enqueuing files into XMMS. (albeit was once able to do so.)

When using IceWM (a relatively minimalistic window manager), I actually pipe the output of the unix ls command (equivalent to dir on Windows) to gvim ( http://www.vim.org/ ) and use a couple of key bindings to play or enqueue files using XMMS. I haven't found a decent file manager, which doesn't bring half of KDE or GNOME with it, that can be used to drag and drop files into XMMS like Konqueror can.

Shlomi Fish
Monday, July 12, 2004

Personally I use winamp5 (about 50% of the time with a classic skin) and use mplayer2.exe for video files.

I can understand though if winamp is losing market share to media player or any other player.. considering that most of the oem systems come with about 5 other players that all steal the associations back and forth between each other.

Suppafly
Monday, July 12, 2004

I am using WMP along with the UI PG-PLUGIN from adhitsoft.  I am very happy!  The plugins made my life very easy to listen my mp3.  Few clicks to navigate through albums and tracks.  I like the artist-album feature very much, never saw it in any other product.

http://www.wmplugins.com/ItemDetail.aspx?ItemID=418

I am waiting for the unicode version for lyrics.

jerrysbridge
Friday, July 30, 2004

I'm using mostly winamp 5, but as I think of switching to mac I try iTunes out from time to time.

I tend to like winamp more. With iPod plugin in it, I'm seriously thinking of withdrawing my switch intention... but let's see if iTunes will get to me...

How do you enqueue another album to play after the one that's playing now, in iTunes? Haven't found out. Can't use that one if the feature doesn't exist. All the more needed if I'll ever buy airport express.

Oh, the WMP? O horror. I hate the left side "media library". I hate similar one in open source zinf, too, so this isn't an anti-ms-thingy. Aren't particularly crazy about the wma format either.

Hm. Winamp. Which other application plays at least these formats: mp3, mp3/m4a, wma, ogg vorbis, ogg flac, ape, etc...? Pray tell immediately, if you know any such app. Would it exist in linux, I will send you money.

dickweed
Thursday, August 12, 2004

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