“Digital music player has been touted as a saviour. But are the numbers sustainable? [...]
Mr. Milunovich [analyst at Merrill Lynch & Co.] calculates that iPod and iTunes will contribute about US15 cents a share to Apple’s earnings this fiscal year, rising to US25 cents a share and revenue of $US2-billion by 2006.
But, as in the past, don’t expect it to be all clear sailing for Apple. Critics say the technology firm is going out on a limb by concentrating so much of its future on the iPod and the online music business, which is still in its infancy.
During the fiscal first quarter of 2004, 53% of Apple’s retail segment sales came from iPod, or other branded and third-party peripherals, software and services.”
MacNN reports that “MONEY Magazine’s article titled “Why iPod can’t save Apple” says the buzz on the digital music player and “swank” storefronts are masking an ebbing bottom line, noting reduced CPU sales (resulting a shrinking marketshare), decreased profits (in part due to the lower-margin iPod and little-to-no profit at the iTunes Music Store), failure of the iPod to drive CPU sales, failure of the retail stores to increase marketshare, hidden retail store costs, no operational income, and little value in the stock. [subscription required to view entire article; highlights posted below]”
Rhythmbox is an integrated music management application, originally inspired by Apple’s iTunes. It is free software, designed to work well under the GNOME Desktop, and based on the powerful GStreamer media framework, or the Xine framework. Now supports iPod, which is still experimental. See README.iPod for more information.
KDLAB, a design firm in New York produced an astounding peice of work known as iSPEC or iPod3. Imagine you’re wearing 3D glasses with built-in earphones which immmerses you into a virtual reality environment of your choosing. In this case a reproduction of the Overlook Hotel’s lobby from the movie “The Shining” by Stanley Kubric. As you wear the glasses you manipulate the interface and environments appearing in the glasses by using wireless, finger mounted controls. We had recently placed this concept in our iPod Concepts gallery and have noticed it has appeared on several websites since. We emailed the producer, director and 3D designer/animator of iSPEC, Joseph Kosinski of KDLAB after viewing the concept video.
“Aimed at retail establishments, bars, salons & caf
Intouchaccess.com is selling the Etymotic ER-4 earphones for $209 and the the ER-6 earphones for only $99. I already purchased the ER-6’s and they arrived within 5 days through the USPS. If you buy the ER-4s or anything else totalling over $100, then there is no shipping charge. This is the lowest price I’ve been able to find.
iPod-Stuff.com is now open and has loads of good features like galleries, forums, articles, reviews, downloads, links and so much more. So hop along to www.ipod-stuff.com and have a look around.
Dealmac: MacResQ.com offers the Griffin iTrip 2 FM Transmitter for third-generation iPods for $29.99. Coupon code “DNEWSTRIP” knocks $2 off for a net price of $27.99, the lowest we know to be available. Shipping starts around $4. Offer ends March 19.
Dealmac: MacResQ again offers the Shure E5c dual-driver earphones for $399.99, $100 off, via coupon code “DNEWSE5C”. We still haven’t seen a better price for this elsewhere. A full product description can be found on Shure’s web site. Offer ends March 22.
Yahoo and Doritos have recently announced giveaways to win iPod minis, iPod, and iTunes gift certificates. Yahoo is giving away an iPod mini a day for 30 days. No purchase necessary and give away ends April 8, 2004. See rules for details. Frito-Lay is giving away a 40GB iPod and $150 iTunes gift certificate as the grand prize in its Doritos Soundbites’ Download it Sweepstakes promotion. Two daily winners will get $20 iTunes gift certificates. You can enter the sweepstakes daily to increase your chances. Ends April 1, 2004. See rules for details.
MacMinute reports on a story published at SiliconeValley.com describing Apple’s strategy to sell more iPods while making less profits overall.
“In the coming months, Apple will begin to unfurl its strategy of making a little less profit on the average iPod, but selling a lot more of them. A Hewlett-Packard branded version of the iPod is due in a few weeks, and HP will pocket some of the profit from that version. The new iPod mini will bring Apple less profit per sale than previous iPod models, because its parts make up a larger portion of its $249 price tag.
Success for Apple will mean selling so many of the music players that the slimmer profits don’t matter, and paying lower prices for the iPod’s building blocks. Apple will begin to show success or failure in the spring”
Dana, the mother of a son with a new iPod mini recently informed us that he cracked his minis’ LCD screen after having sat on it while it was in his pants’ back pocket.
“My son just got an iPod mini last week. Had it in his pocket, sat down and cracked the display. I took it to the Apple store in Houston. They told me it would cost less to buy a new one ($249)!!!!!
This is going to be happening all the time, because the minis are much thinner and relatively flexible.”
A reader has informed us that he has created several icons for Mac OS X depicting the silhouetted dancers from the iPod ads. Free download available at MacMonkies.com
Vfxsoup has posted an interesting interview with Alex Brodie, who produced the silhouettes for the iPod ads. The interview also has two before and after photos of the people that became silhouettes in the rock version of the iPod commercials.
Update: At the request of Apple, the site has removed all references to the iPod ads since our posting.
MacRumors is reporting that “according to the meta-description embedded in the HP Music Site, HP should start shipping iTunes pre-installed HPs by the end of this month.”
The Apple Store has the 10G and 30G 3rd generation iPods on sale in the “Special Deals” section of the online store. These are new units, priced at $249 and $449, respectively.
JAVOedge, makers of PDA cases and accessories has announced two new leather iPod cases. JAVOLeatherCase Design 1 ($30.95) is a sleeve case made of leather with white stitching, elastic expansion band allowing for one-size-fits-all, and access to top and bottom ports. The JAVOLeatherCase Design 2 (29.95) features front access to the iPod, access to top and bottom ports and is also made of leather with white stitching. There is no screen protector and Design 2 fits iPod 15/20GB models.
Update: We have emailed JAVOedge with the concern that you can not connect headphones to the iPod while the top flap is closed on the Design 2 case. JAVOedge has informed us they are currently cutting access holes into the flap of the Design 2 case to allow the connection of headphones while the flap is closed, and should be available within a couple weeks.
“For several weeks I’ve been avoiding the iPod mini like a nasty disease.
At the grand opening of the new Apple store in San Francisco, the iPod product manager, Danika Cleary, tried to persuade me to check one out, but I refused.
‘No thanks, I don’t want to hold it,’ I told her. ‘I don’t even want to look at it, because then I’d have to buy one.”
I know the seductive power of Apple’s products, and the iPod mini gives off irresistible ‘buy me’ vibes. The mini casts a spell, a shopping hex that pulls you irresistibly toward the cash register.”
Software developers, StartBrite Solutions after being pressured by Apple’s legal department have removed the pPod/pBop iPod emulator software for PocketPC PDAs from its website. “Due to legal pressure from Apple we are no longer able to distribute this application. Sorry for any inconvenience.”