Then there are the carriers and the record labels: a business model has to be worked out that satisfies both players in this game, without alienating consumers with either too high prices or too restrictive DRM. We all know that both carriers and content providers tend to be very protective of profits, but both may need to compromise in order to gain a greater market.
Yet that potential market does nevertheless exist and is very tempting. Rumors have it that Apple will soon release an â€œiPhoneâ€ and Microsoft is readying a Zune phone. Jupiter Research predicts that in the US â€œthe installed base of mobile phones capable of playing MP3 quality songs will surpass the number of music devise users beginning in 2009, but actual usage of music phones is nascent in the US.â€ IDC expects â€œmusic-enabled mobile phones to account for 60 percent of all mobile phones shipped to the United States by 2010.â€ Worldwide, Informa believes the number of handsets sold with music capabilities will rise from 69.8 million in 2005 to 126.1 million in 2006 – an 80% increase.
So what does this all mean to the BlackBerry platform? Only that any brand wanting to seriously compete in the consumer space must now take the calculus of music playing capabilities into consideration.