I've never understood why some telecommunicaions companies believe that people will watch television and listen to music on their cell phones. The cell phone has a small screen and limited memory; the sound isn't very good; whats the point? Recent news indicates that cellphone companies that bet on the multimedia market are in trouble:
But many of the new carriers are struggling as they fight over a relatively thin slice of the market. While the number of U.S. cellphone users has doubled over the past six years to 215 million, only around 1% of them regularly use cellphones to watch videos, for example. Cellphones also are facing competition from iPods, Blackberries and other multimedia devices.
I can't claim to be prescient, however: I never thought cellphones with cameras would ever get off the ground.
Each of these multimedia items — cameras, videos, and music — are disaggregated from their original storage mediums (paper, phonograph records, videotape) and are now available as distinct components that can be built into anything. The ability to watch video can be built into your cellphone, but it doesn't mean it should be built into your cellphone. While there's a market for combined devices, I still think distinct devices for communications and for multimedia will remain the norm until cellular technology disappears in favor of internet telephony and everything moves to pocket computers.
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