“When Sony execs crowed a few weeks ago that their latest MP3 players were THE iPod Killers one thing was obvious. They were oblivious to the fact that the term ‘iPod Killer’ had already gone from clever market-speak to running joke. Think about it. Last year we ran a five part article covering dozens of iPod Killers only to watch Apple gain even more market share. This grouping of portables, many of them flash-based players, did nothing to dent the iPod Juggernaut. The proof was Apple’s introduction of the iPod Shuffle – its first flash unit – two weeks after last year’s holiday sales season was over. In a few months Apple went from 0% of the flash player market to over two-thirds of it. So much for iPod Killers,” Richard Menta writes for MP3newswire.
“But hey, let us keep the joke going, because with so many competitors someone has to eventually come up with a player that sustains sales into the double digits. Now that the Rio brand has been retired – a name that managed to keep Rio a distant second to the iPod in overall sales – someone else can go for number two. Will it be iRiver or Creative or Archos? Maybe it will be Sony or Samsung. We’ll just have to wait and see,” Menta writes.
“Of course, as the Charles Arther of the Register pointed out astutely, some of these firms will be claiming increased market share very soon and without having to sell more units. With Apple replacing the hard drive-based Mini with the iPod nano – and shifting there biggest selling player niche (2-6GB capacity units) over to flash memory – everyone else’s percentage of the hard drive-based player market will automatically grow, some into the double digits. They will thus boast of a higher market percentage for a shrinking market niche,” Menta writes. “But enough already, [here] are the first fifteen newcomers to challenge for the Digital Audio Player crown…”
Full article here.
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