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Ping pongs

Oh my, what a disappointing turn of events.

Tech blogs and the rumour mill have been rife for weeks and months with speculation about “Social” coming into iTunes.

Well Ping has arrived and has completely underwhelmed even the most die hard Apple fans (of which, you could probably argue, I’m one) so far. It’s a mess. Let’s be brutally honest, it’s a steaming pile of poo.

@Euan Semple pretty much sums up the worst failings in this blog post.

The unfortunate thing about Ping is that it’s not a social “music” network but a recommendation engine for the iTunes store and artists. The evidence for this is clear if you see that the discussion about Ping isn’t happening on Ping (it can’t because of the way it’s set up) but on Twitter and Facebook.

That’s a missed opportunity if I ever saw one. Opening up a social platform (based around the music in their library’s as well as what they purchase) to the 160 million customers of the iTunes store is a gold mine. Closing that network so that people can’t actually interact in the way that they chose (or are used to from other platforms) is a mistake of Bill-Gatesian proportions (circa ’99 – CDs are it, the Internet is a fad)

What’s interesting is that it seems from this debacle that Apple share Google’s failure to “get Social”. Microsoft by comparison seem to be closer to the pulse, integrating Facebook into their apps. Could it be that that the recently de-throned King from Seattle still has some arrows in it’s quiver, is willing to embrace the new (instead of trying to reinvent it in a way that they control) and be learning from it’s past mistakes?

Interesting times ahead.