Friday, December 02, 2005

Jupiter: Why music is more important than just music

Michael Gartenberg posts at the Jupiter Analyst Weblogs "about the implications of Apple dominating the music business and what those implications are important beyond music." Gartenberg decribes things as moving towards "contextual flow." This he explains is

not just about me listening to my music at home on my stereo or even taking a few cassettes or CDs with me on the road. It's about my information flowing to me whatever the given context is and whatever device I happen to be using at the time. Here's the thing about Apple's bits. They only flow to Apple devices or Apple controlled software. In short, it goes where Apple says it goes. That means the iTunes song I buy works fine an iPod but not an iRiver. And if I want to flow that music stream? Well, if I want it to move around my house it will only go to my stereo via an Airport Express. If I want it on my phone, it better be an Apple sanctioned one. If it goes on my PC, that PC better have iTunes on it. All of those scenarios have strong implications for who controls the content infrastructure going forward.
As he has done in the past, Gartenberg warns Microsoft that it "needs to be concerned" because it's getting left behind in Apple's vapor trail. He accurately points out that the "iPod is having a runaway start to the holiday season. I haven't seen one report, one commentary that even mentions ANY other device." Gartenberg concludesby stating:
I'm not suggesting it's game over. But I will say, it's hard to see how anyone can pull the market away from them. Yes, there are ways I think it can be done, but no one's doing anything at the moment. At least that's the way it appears.
I'm really trying to rack my brain to come up with some names to counter Gartenberg's conclusion, but all I'm coming up with is a big fat iZero....