Self Inflicted Disruption

iPhone = self-inflicted disruption.

Not only does it disrupt the cell phone market – it also leads the way in a movement that eventually means disrupting and then killing off the iPod.

iPhone won’t kill the iPod all by itself – and it won’t happen this year. Or even next.

But it’s clearly the first bold step in a journey that will eventually make the iPod concept – (the solo portable mp3/movie player) obsolete.

The very product that brought Apple mainstream success and adulation is now having it’s death carefully orchestrated by Apple themselves.

And in radio?

PPM, HD Radio, Internet streaming, Satcasters, The Youth problem etc… – all opportunities to re-make our business and invent the NEXT way.

Instead fear, trepidation, worry and a desperateness to “protect” what was and is appear to be the industry’s average reaction.

And if we really think HD Radio = disruption . . . consider what “HD Radio” might look like if it were made by a 3rd party not tied to protecting the current interests of the radio industry. What if HD Radio were invented by a company or group of independent radicals whose sole interest was to make the radio listening experience BETTER for listeners rather than preserve and protect the group owners?

Think TiVo – not TV Guide.

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2 Responses to Self Inflicted Disruption

  1. Tom Webster says:

    I wouldn’t overstate the case on the iPhone just yet, Jeff–there have been plenty of all-in-one convergence devices to date, and my local Walgreen’s is still selling portable CD players! The iPhone may solve the “smartphone” problem, but I think the jury is way, way out on it being the utimate convergence device. There are lots of reasons why someone might not want to use their $600 phone as a music player. It lacks the one crucial innovation that would really have me chucking my BlackBerry, however–battery life, which seems to have remained unchanged for the last decade or so. If someone can invent a battery that lets me watch movies and browse the Internet on my phone that doesn’t leave me with a paperweight by the time I land at LAX, then I might throw out my iPod (or even my Zune). Don’t get me wrong–I am Apple’s biggest fanboy (and certainly an inconvenience to the folks back at the office for it, but the reality distortion field was pretty high at MacWorld. Announcing a product that won’t realistically be in anyone’s hands until the fall and somehow upstaging CES in the process is a feat any radio professional should study and learn from.

  2. Jeff Schmidt says:

    I hear ya Tom – I don’t think this is a reality distortion post. I think I’m pretty modest in my guess that iPhone leads the way to a word where solo mp3 players collecting dust on a rack at Walgreens will replace the portable CD players collecting dust on a rack at Walgreens.

    My point was to bring awarness to how Apple hasn’t let the success of the iPod box it into a corner and squeeze out innovation.

    My quess is if radio were making the iPhone they would have left the iPod out of the device so as to protect it’s “lucrative” market.

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