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iPod faces new challenges from Sony, mobile phones

updated 07:10 am EST, Tue March 8, 2005

Sony flash music devices

Sony has launched a new line of flash-based MP3 players. Designed to counter Apple's recent entry into the low-cost music device market, " looks at the challenges posed by cell phones--which are expected to incorporate mini hard drives and higher-capacity flash storage in the near future and will soon leverage higher speed networks for downloading music: "The seamless experience of mobiles and PC downloads is approaching, he predicted. Mr Babinet said the mobile phone had a number of advantages over PCs which would see it become the focus for music downloading in the future."

by MacNN Staff





  1. crayola

    Joined: Dec 1969



    gotta admit, those Sony sticks look pretty cool.

  1. jimothy

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Sony sticks

    The look doesn't do it for me, but I suppose some will like them. To me, they look like a cigarette lighter or perfume bottle.

    But is there much of a market for music devices priced above the iPod? Only time will tell.

  1. kaleberg

    Joined: Dec 1969


    they won't sell music

    Unfortunately, you won't be able to buy any music for your phone. If you change service providers or get a new phone, you'll have to rebuild your music collection from scratch.

    Eventually, we'll all have WiFi (or its successor) pocket PCs that will serve as phones, file stores, music players, among other things.

  1. ecrelin

    Joined: Dec 1969


    reality check

    Yeah those things are Fugly! and I guess saying a "small" LCD screen is right, about 1/4" square? So the 512 goes for 33% more than the entry shuffle and the 1Gb 20% more than the bigger one? Battery life is good but not that good and of course as Rob Glaser correctly points out, it won't be slick to get stuff out of iTunes on to itů

  1. JackNN

    Joined: Dec 1969



    ... as long as they can keep it simple. I don't think the average consumer wants a device that's as complex as a PDA. This is why the iPod might continue to hold its own.

    At first I was nervous about the new Sony unit, then I thought, it's not the first flash player with a display...

  1. urapns

    Joined: Dec 1969


    not quite

    "All seven flash-based Network Walkman players use AAA-type batteries."...disposable batteries, not rechargeables...not the same thing. You'll be feeding it every few days with a new battery.

  1. SomeToast

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Music format

    Note that Sony is back to their old ways -- their new flash players are ATRAC3-only.

  1. jasonsRX7

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Not ATRAC only

    They support MP3, too. The OLED screens sound kind of cool.

  1. tliszt

    Joined: Dec 1969


    I disagree...

    I don't think mobile phones vs. PCs will win out with music. There's more to do with music than just listen while in transit.

    What about music to use with iMovie, iPhoto and iDVD creations? What about listening at home with home stereo systems, etc.

    The iPod isn't the be all, end all. But certainly neither is a cell phone.

  1. Titanium Man

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Phones with hard drives?

    Yeah, brilliant idea. Considering how often cell phones are handled (read "dropped") and how often iPod hard drives fail already. All we need is to combine the two and people can be screaming about losing their tunes, calendars and phonebooks after dropping the phone.

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