Thursday, January 11, 2007

This guy should be fired as "Communications Editor" as he has missed the most fundamentally important ramification of the iPhone; the coming together of a means of billing people for the music they buy with the gadget they can play it on. The iPod that you listen to music on will be inside a device that is attached to a network that has a billing mechanism in place to charge you for the music you are enjoying. Apple will allow you to buy songs direct into the iPhone and Cingular will bill you for them on the phone bill. Perfect. Maybe they will evolve a subscription model where you dont even buy them, you just pay a cent per listen - the Long Tail rule says that a million one cent listens is better than a hundred 99 cent sales. One cent doesn't seem much taken one at a time, now does it?

The cellphone has long been posited as a candidate for the ewallet - the billing is built in and it's perfect for micropayment transactions that all add up for the supplier: this might just be the thin end of the wedge the cellphone industry have been waiting for. Hey, guess what? Google are in at the ground floor - once you have tasted the Map crackpipe they'll get their ads on there quicksmart, you betcha! And wont they look yummy on that tasty little candy-bar of a phone. And the best bit? The early adopters will be the best kind of "design-savvy" fashion victimistas who fall for this stuff as easy as you like. No wonder Charles Dunstone is soiling himself with the effort of getting an exclusive deal with Apple - even if only for a few short weeks...

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