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What cellpods need

April 7, 2005

Carlo Longino writing in TheFeature has drawn similar conclusions about music enabled mobile phones to mine a year ago.

Writing about the differences between cellpods and iPods, he notes:

There’s only one real significant remaining difference between iPods and music phones, and it’s significant, but certainly not insurmountable

The diff? Usability, especially the UI. I agree with Carlo when he suggests:

Vendors should…offer users full-featured media players where users can manipulate files and playlists and do other functions, but the primary interface should be a simple play button that quickly fires up the tunes

Cellpods need simple external controls a la iPod Shuffle. If they add that, comparable storage capacity (at least 1-2GB), and reasonable music fidelity, they’d finally be getting into the ballpark of iPod.

Maybe Apple’s seen this writing on the wall, too, and that’s why they licensed iPod tech to Moto to begin with? Should be interesting to watch as more interesting cellpods are announced and come on the market this year.

Watch this space for more info on upcoming models.

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  1. Bill,

    I had the chance to test drive a Motorola e380. While Moto did a good job of improving the speakers and sound for music, I received complaints about the voice quality of the phone. The comment was: “you sound like you inside a tin can.”

    Your comments on the UI are on point. There’s another piece of data that I’ve pondered with respect to music purposed devices like the iPod and phones with music. What sort of device turnover occurs with mp3 players? Are mobile phones viable long enough for third parties to bring great accessories to market? Like speaker docks, or snap on ampliphers? Third parties add lots of value.

    I think the question most users will be asking themselves is: “Do I need a music device or do I need a phone that can play some
    of my tunes on occassion?”

  2. Bill,

    I agree that UI is important. It will be increasingly more important as we continually add new features for the phone. Without it, I think it will start to seriously alienate subscribers as well as turn off a whole lot of newbies.


    Mobile Slate ( — Blog About Mobile.

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