What market is next for ‘i’ treatment?

Does anyone remember what the mobile market was like before the iPhone? Kontra, author of the counternotions blog does. Remembrance of Things Past So for a more reasoned perspective, let us take a breath and remember what the world was like before Apple introduced the iPhone: Carriers ruled the industry with an iron fist To … Continue reading “What market is next for ‘i’ treatment?”

Does anyone remember what the mobile market was like before the iPhone?

Kontra, author of the counternotions blog does.

Remembrance of Things Past
So for a more reasoned perspective, let us take a breath and remember what the world was like before Apple introduced the iPhone:

  1. Carriers ruled the industry with an iron fist
  2. To access carriers’ networks handset makers capitulated everything
  3. Carriers dictated phone designs, features, apps, prices, marketing, advertising and branding
  4. Phones were reduced to cheap, disposable lures for carriers’ service contracts
  5. There was no revenue sharing between carriers and manufacturers
  6. There was no notion of phone networks becoming dumb pipes anytime soon
  7. Affordable, unlimited data plans as standard were unheard of
  8. A phone that would entice people to switch networks by the millions was a pipe dream
  9. Mobile devices were phones first and last, not usable handheld computers
  10. Even the smartest phones didn’t have seamless WiFi integration
  11. Without Visual Voice Mail, messages couldn’t be managed non-linearly
  12. There were no manufacturer owned and operated on-the-phone application stores as the sole source
  13. An on-the-phone store having 65,000 apps downloaded nearly 2 billion times was not on anyone’s radar screen
  14. Low-cost, high-volume app pricing strategy with a 70/30 split didn’t exist
  15. Robust one-click in-app transactions were unknown
  16. There was no efficient, large scale, consistent and lucrative mobile app market for developers large and small
  17. Buttons, keys, joysticks, sliders…anything but the screen was the focus of phones
  18. Phones didn’t come with huge 3.5″ touch screens
  19. Pervasive multitouch, gesture-based UI was science fiction
  20. Actually usable, multi-language, multitouch virtual keyboards on phones didn’t exist
  21. Integrated sensors like accelerometers and proximity detectors had no place in phones
  22. Phones could never compete in 3D/gaming with dedicated portable consoles
  23. iPod-class audio/video players on mobiles didn’t exist
  24. No phone had ever offered a desktop-like web browser experience
  25. Sophisticated SDKs and phones were strangers to each other

If you remember what the MP3 music and player market was like before iPod?

  • Dozens of models with awful interfaces (I had a Thomson Lyra)
  • Half a dozen lame ways of loading your music (I had a Thomson Lyra)
  • Slow slow slow loading of music over serial (I had a Thomson Lyra)
  • Tiny amounts of storage in tiny devices (I had a Thomson Lyra)
  • Large amounts of storage in big clunky devices (I ‘m looking at you Archos)
  • Cross encoding into proprietary music formats (I had a Thomson Lyra)
  • Battery life counted in minutes (I had a Thomson Lyra)
  • Shoddy plastics, serial ports (I had a Thomson Lyra)
  • Expensive subscription models for proprietary tat.
  • One device eligible for use with bought music (I had a Thomson Lyra)
  • Zero music portability (I had a Thomson Lyra)
  • And the list goes on. (Did I mention I had a Thomson Lyra)

So Apple revolutionised this market with the iPod, just as they have recently done the same with the mobile market. What market should they change next?

The Tablet market, no?

0 thoughts on “What market is next for ‘i’ treatment?”

  1. Tablet market seems too … small? A tablet isn’t something everyone considers they need to own. I’d say something way more end consumer focused. They kind of tried TV already. What else does everyone in the civilized world own?

  2. Nice post. I remember back in 2000 being the first person in NI to sell the UKs first video phone.

    The sharp gx10 was £250 on a £35 a month plan for 200 mind and 50 texts. Video calls on a video phone ? I think not but you could MMS it for a cool 50p

  3. @Aidan: I think the Tablet market has more to it. It, just like MP3 Players and mobile phones, is a market that currently everyone is servicing badly. And leaving it ripe for Apple to do something. I guess that’s the question – what hardware out there sucks that Apple could sell an integrated solution into.

    @Russell: I remember seeing some mobile video stuff back in the day when I was in Nortel and saw how people dodged the cameras. I’m interested in knowing: did the guy who bought one buy another? Did he have a friend with one? Do we know if he ever used it as a video phone?

  4. No. He did not buy another one. However over the course of the weekend we shifted around 20 pairs of GX10s at the knockdown price of £450 a pair.

    Of course the Ericsson T68I had came out earlier that year which could receive MMS, it also had an optional camera attachment.

    People at the time could always MMS to email to send the video on. These phones did not come with a cable until the v2 Gx10.

  5. iTablet:
    eIt certainly looks like a tablet is next but I’m not sure there’s the potential for this to have the impact they’re used to having.

    Apple’s computers are still fairly high end so maybe something towards the entry level end of the market would make sense.

    They tried this already but could do better, especially now they have developed the media supply side of things further.

    A massive market that would benefit from aspects of the Apple treatment but I can’t help thinking their attitude to openness would get in the way of this one. They need to get off the Works With and Made For trains and open up to existing protocols to get into and add true value to a market like this. I’m not sure that would fit with their philosophy.

  6. I agree that iHealth is likely. Given the debacle/debate going on here, the gross, gross inefficiences, waste and unbrindled gouging that goes on in our system. Plus, Apple getting very serious about health monitor connections to the iPhone.

  7. Apple are demonstration health monitor apps but if they are really serious about this area they need to take a more open approach to communicating with devices. Their present approach is much too closed. There are emerging open standards that are used by a growing number of manufactures and researchers. I know a number of people who want to work with iPhones but don’t because they simply can’t work with them in the way they need to.

  8. I think the health market isn’t being done BADLY enough yet 🙂

    Devices that piss me off:
    Photocopiers (obsolete)
    Fax machines (obsolete)
    Office phones (argh)
    Cars (stupid!)
    VCRs (Apple TV grows up?)
    Microwave ovens (varied UI & power)

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