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Chasing Apple... SanDisk's Eli Harari

Techstination feature for Thursday, January 19, 2006

Chasing Apple…it isn't easy. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. In the digital music player business….lots of companies have been frustrated by the dominance of Apple's iPods. During the last three months of 2005…Apple sold 14 million iPods. But companies like Creative Technologies and SanDisk keep trying. SanDisk is out with a sleek new player….the e200….that looks a lot like Apple's iPod Nano…..but can store up to 6 gigabytes….and can play video as well. SanDisk CEO Eli Harari….says the company has learned to be content with being number two in the flash memory music player business…

"Well we've taken the iPod Nano…it's a great product… we think that our Sansa e200 is a significant improvement over the Nano in terms of mechanical construction, the features and in terms of value proposition. It doesn't have the iPod cool factor. It doesn't have the iPod mystique of course. But it's a very, very good value proposition. It's an open system for delivery, with Rhapsody, Plays for Sure, Microsoft, Napster and other services." You mentioned that mystique. Can you or anyone else really crack that mystique? "I don't know. I think that Steve Jobs is a magician. And a master magician in marketing. And I'm pretty happy where we are today."

The SanDisk CEO says the biggest growth area for his company may be in memory cards for use in cell phones…to store music and pictures. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.