Friday, July 07, 2006

Rob Enderle: The End of the iPod Wave

Rob Enderle posts at Technology Pundits that he's "starting to see a number of anecdotal reports indicating the market lust for the Apple (AAPL) iPod as a product, and perhaps MP3 players as a category, is starting to cool dramatically."

Enderle discusses the merits of the possible substitute, the handset, which he thinks "is a more useful device, increasingly it can play music as well, and with flash dropping in price like a rock, you can get decent capacity in the device." Plus he notes the competition is improving and "the new SanDisk and Samsung players are thought to be better then some of the iPods and both MTV’s Urge and Real Networks Rhapsody are increasingly favored over iTunes while Apple’s own new lines are reported to be delayed."

Enderle suggests:

We expect Apple will dramatically expand their iPod accessories line to better farm their installed base. They will also have to address the problems associated with their DRM and its inability to use subscription services which, we’re sure, even they can now admit are the future of this space so they can offer one as well.

Expect a stronger tie between their PCs and iPods as they go forward, they had already tied together design elements but hadn’t yet gotten creative with integrated docking or purchase bundles.