A reporter from the Philadelphia City Paper shocked Apple fans Tuesday when he reported seeing Obama, who says he's a Mac user, using Microsoft's iPod challenger at the gym. "He hopped on the machine next to me and broke a mean sweat while reading a copy of USA Today and listening to his Zune," reporter Neal Santos said in his blog.
The report didn't go unchallenged in the blogosphere. Why, for heaven's sake, would a Mac user sport a Zune, which doesn't work on Apple computers? Of course, depending on Obama's technical skills, he could use software, such as Boot Camp or Parallels, to run Windows on his Mac to sync up with the Zune, but that seems like a lot of work.
Santos, who must have felt the pressure from Apple fans, clarified on Wednesday his original report, saying he didn't know whether Obama actually owned the Zune or whether he had borrowed it from someone else. Nevertheless, he said he knows what he saw. "I've seen a Zune in action. I know what it looks like."
So far, the Microsoft marketing machine hasn't tried to take advantage of the report. A Zune spokesman told Todd Bishop, managing editor of TechFlash, that the company didn't have any more details, beyond what it has read on the Web.
As for Obama, perhaps he'll end the controversy at his next press conference, after he announces his fix for the economy.