“Apple clearly doesn’t perceive Motorola’s ROKR phone as a significant threat, and neither does market watcher Canalys, which today said the MP3 player makers are, for now, safe from mobile phone manufacturing rivals. It doesn’t need to worry about portable media players, either, if forecasts from market researcher In-Stat prove correct,” Tony Smith reports for The Register.
“Canalys calculates that 25.6m music players shipped in H1 2005, not far from the total for 2004 as a whole. Then, some 28.3m devices were sold. Of the units shipped in the first six months of 2005, 44.8 per cent had Apple’s name on them. That compares with the 16 per cent shipped by Creative and the 7.1 per cent sold by the now-defunct Rio,” Smith reports. “The researcher said it believes MP3 player sales will continue to grow despite support for music in mobile phones.”
“The exception is the low-end of the market, where casual listeners may look to load music on their phones rather than fork out for a dedicated playback device… The cross-over point comes when Apple allows a phone vendor to brand a handset with the iPod name. The only Apple brand on the ROKR is iTunes, which shows exactly where Apple sees the device’s value: as a platform for encouraging music sales. That said, Motorola officials appear to have claimed the handset’s 100-track limitation is Apple-imposed, via its DRM technology, rather than a fundamental lack of storage capacity. So Apple does feel the need to hobble the ROKR to a small extent,” Smith reports.
Full article here.
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