Apple Wiki
Apple Wiki

William S. "Bill" Kincaid (born March 10, 1956) is an American computer engineer and entrepreneur notable for co-creating the MP3 player SoundJam MP, which was acquired by Apple Computer and renamed iTunes.


Kincaid and Jeff Robbin worked for Apple in the 1990s as system software engineers on the Copland operating system project, which was later abandoned. Both left Apple, after which Robbin created Conflict Catcher and Kincaid worked at a startup.

SoundJam MP[]

After listening to a show on the radio channel NPR, Kincaid created hardware and device driver support for the Diamond Rio line of digital audio players. He then enlisted Robbin to develop the front-end for an MP3-playing software they named SoundJam MP. Dave Heller joined and completed the core team. The three chose Casady & Greene as their distributor, as Robbin had previously worked with them to distribute Conflict Catcher. SoundJam MP saw early success in the Mac music player market, competing with Panic's Audion.



Apple WWDC 2002 Session 102 - Performance Optimization with Velocity Engine

(skip to 24m35s for Bill Kincaid)

In early 2000, Apple was looking to purchase an MP3 player and approached both Casady & Greene (SoundJam) and Panic (Audion). Because Panic was caught up in negotiations with AOL, the meeting never took place.[1] Turning to Casady & Greene, Apple purchased the rights to the SoundJam software in a deal covered by a two-year secrecy clause.[2]

SoundJam MP was renamed iTunes. Robbin, Kincaid, and Heller became the original developers of the software. All three continue to work at Apple, with Robbin remaining the current lead developer of iTunes.[3][4]

Personal life[]

In his spare time, Kincaid enjoys racing. In a racing profile, he says “A buddy and I wrote Apple's iTunes software and helped develop the iPod and the Apple music store. It wouldn't have happened if I hadn't heard about MP3 on the radio on the way to a race...”[5]


External links[]


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