Posted by: Olga Kharif on August 23, 2005
We’ve been hearing for months that Motorola will release a cell phone running Apple’s iTunes. Yet another confirmation that the phone will be released, despite all claims that Motorola has pulled the plug at the last minute, came this Saturday, when the Federal Communications Commission posted a document indicating that it’s approved the phone for sale in the U.S.
Frankly, I am surprised that anyone has had any doubts that this phone will be released — by September, as Motorola has previously said. This is Motorola’s most anticipated upcoming product; so why would the company axe it? Plus, unless Motorola releases the phone now, it risks losing ground to cell phone makers that are coming out with new music phones.
Sure, the details of a partnership between Motorola and Apple have had to be ironed out, that's why the phone hasn't been released already. Offering a cell phone music service, and figuring out how to do revenue sharing between the two companies is not easy.
But there's no doubt in my mind that the phone will come out, since the product's cancellation will deal a blow to both Apple and Motorola. Both companies' investors are counting on it.
Besides, if Motorola waits much longer, it will fall behind its main competitor, Nokia, whose new N91 music phone is getting rave reviews. Motorola was late to market with camera phones, and it lost market share, big time, as a result, a few years ago. I am sure the company isn't keen on repeating the experience this time around, when music phones just might be the hottest new gadget on this year's Christmas lists.