Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Microsoft & Nokia vs Motorola & Apple: New iPod phone on the horizon?

As you're probably aware Nokia licensed Windows Media technology from Microsoft last February; in an attempt to build a widely distributed iPod class contender and squeeze out any major MP3 player out of business. But why would Nokia choose one of its biggest competitors as an ally? If Nokia really wanted to go for market share in music, surely they would approach Apple? No doubt, Nokia tried and Apple nixed the idea. But, why would Apple say no to a partnership with the world's largest cell phone maker? If you consider the iPod as a platform for listening to music, the logical next step of the evolution is the cell phone? News started to surface on the internet about a possible iPod phone; the Motorola ROKR is set to launch next week. Nokia rolls out approximately 690 million phones a year, Microsoft Windows Media is subscription based unlike iTunes, and 3G is out in the open and on the horizon at many countries. Given the customer loyalty Nokia has and Microsoft market-share; I think this can be a possible iPod Killer. However, If there is one lesson CEO Steve Jobs has learned the hard way, it is that being first rarely pays in technology markets (remember Newton?). Part of the success of the iPod was exactly that it did not come first, and it is likely that Steve Jobs will play this game the same way. For More:

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