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Summary:

There might have been a good reason, at some point, for Apple to try selling QuickTime Pro. Not that I can remember such a time. While Apple forges new ground constantly in the digital media arena with innovative hardware and software such as the iPhone, iPod, […]

Death to QuickTime Pro There might have been a good reason, at some point, for Apple to try selling QuickTime Pro. Not that I can remember such a time. While Apple forges new ground constantly in the digital media arena with innovative hardware and software such as the iPhone, iPod, Aperture, and Final Cut, the online store still attempts to sell QT Pro with the taglet “Upgrade from video watcher to video maker.”

Yeah, right.

I’ve already alluded once that almost all of QT Pro’s functionality is easily emulated with iMovie ’06 — and I’ve verified that it continues to be with the completely redesigned iMovie ’08. What exactly are QT Pro’s big selling points according to the Apple Store?

  • Convert media formats. So? We can do that with freeware, donationware, charityware, or shareware that is actually worth the asking price.
  • Edit with ease. Isn’t this what iMovie is all about? Did I miss a memo?
  • Create stunning video. Um… Ditto. Also, iMovie ’08 will export directly to YouTube, while QT Pro does not.
  • Build your QuickTime video library. With QT Pro you can save movies from the web. Here’s a hint: You can do that anyway with Safari, Firefox, and most other browsers without even having to open a media player at all.
  • Record your podcast. Now that’s just silly. Apple gives us iMovie and GarageBand for that one.

Even the QT Pro product page reads like it hasn’t been updated in two years. I honestly wonder how many people have ever chipped in the $30 Apple asks for the Pro license. QT Pro is superfluous and it couldn’t possibly be contributing to Apple’s profitability. All new Macs come with iLife pre-installed. I rushed out and bought iLife ’08 the day it dropped, like many others; the $80 price tag for iLife is reasonable, but $30 for QT Pro is inane. Can they even continue to justify the costs of sustaining development and marketing?

I say the answer is a big, flat thud of a no. So I call today for Apple to drop QuickTime Pro from their software offerings, and instead of duplicating code across products, to spend those person-hours on more innovation. While there are probably few person-hours spent on QT Pro, why spend any at all? What scarce features still unique to Pro (if any are left) could, and should, be integrated into QuickTime and iLife.

Death to QuickTime Pro! Who’s with me?

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  1. I have to agree – count me in! (oh yeah can i get a refund too ;))

  2. I guess you forgot that there’s a windows version that doesn’t have any Apple-based competition?

  3. I’m sure Apple has to pay various licensees a fee for each copy of QuickTime with encoding capabilities that’s delivered. To suggest that Apple should just pony up that license fee for every single copy of QuickTime shipped — including, you know, things like iTunes — strikes me as incredibly silly.

  4. Even if it’s related to licensing, Apple should at least ship a copy of Pro with ilife. As mentioned we have imovie – which should include a similar amount of licensing for the codecs. Basically Apple are making us pay twice.

    Free Pro with new mac or ilife only seems fair.

  5. Nick’s got the nail on the head. Apple presumably does have to pay the piper at mp3licensing.com (who even at one time claimed — and possibly still do; their website is ambiguous — their patents apply to the AAC format), but if the functionality is delivered to users with iLife, then it’s fair to assume that Apple is considering the licensing cost as part of iLife as well. Buying QT Pro merely purchases an additional license from Thomson/Fraunhofer, et. al., as well as the QT License from Apple.

    Pete raises a good point, and I wondered how long it would be before someone would. iLife doesn’t exist on PC, and unless it’s going to be revealed at “one more thing” in October at the Leopard announcement (who saw Safari for Windows coming?), there’s no reason to cut off the Windows line of QT Pro. But Mac QT Pro is still redundant. Any way you try to justify it, you can’t.

    Nick — something tells me you won’t get that refund, but maybe a $15 store credit. ;-)

  6.   Esta cerca el fin de Quicktime Pro? by Applegalaxy Monday, September 10, 2007

    [...] Via: The Apple Weblog [...]

  7. I use QT all the time. It’s part of OS X core and I rather use it that iMovie. Not so for video editing but for resources editing. It’s an excellent tool.

  8. @Nicklet — So why not take the slim form factor of QT Pro, merge them into QT, and bump the price of an iLife license up by $10? At the rate Apple is diversifying their hardware lineup, they really need to streamline their software holdings. QT Pro is naturally the next unlucky swine in the abattoir. I would hold nothing against Apple, though, if they recovered 1/3 of the current cost ($10) in the process of merging Pro into the QT Player and iLife family.

  9. Another reason to kill it off. Being able to view videos in Full Screen used to require the Pro version; now you can do that with the free version.

  10. “Edit with ease.” Yeah, it takes years to figure out all of the hidden features and twisted options.
    I once bought Quicktime Pro but a few month later I had to update to the next version and well – my Quicktime Pro wasn’t Pro anymore and I had to pay again if I wanted it back. No way out. Shame on that!

    I still have older versions of software which I don’t have to update for money.

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