1 Comment

Summary:

Business 2.0: The size of a pack of chewing gum, the USB flash drive combined cheap flash memory with omnipresent USB connection technology to kill off the floppy drive. At first blush these devices are poster children for the curse of commoditization. Falling prices have boosted […]

Business 2.0: The size of a pack of chewing gum, the USB flash drive combined cheap flash memory with omnipresent USB connection technology to kill off the floppy drive. At first blush these devices are poster children for the curse of commoditization. Falling prices have boosted adoption — nearly $4.5 billion worth of these drives were sold in 2004, and that number will top $5.6 billion in 2006, according to market research firm Web-Feet. This fast adoption means opportunity. Take Apple’s (AAPL) iPod Shuffle. At its core the iPod Shuffle is nothing but a cheap USB flash drive. While a 512-megabyte flash drive costs about $45 in the open market, Apple sells the Shuffle for twice as much. How? By adding special Apple software and some chips, it turned a cheap drive into a slick music player. (The lesson here is that if you want to make real money, you should differentiate the commodity product with good industrial design and software.) More over on Business 2.0

By Om Malik

You're subscribed! If you like, you can update your settings

Related stories

  1. [...] I am a big fan of USB drives as Port-a-PC, and have liked what U3 has done in the space. [ Never mind, they haven’t done anything for Mac population…. or maybe they know we don’t leave home without it (PowerBooks!) ] And now U3 is going to bundle Yahoo! toolbar with U3 smart drives. The toolbar will work with Mozilla Firefox browser for U3. [ I wonder how much it cost Yahoo for this!] However, the really big news is that U3 powered USB drives will have office suites from OpenOffice.org and ThinkFree. Most of these will be available for download, and on new USB drives from Clever-Stuff, PQI, TwinMOS and SanDisk. [...]

    Share

Comments have been disabled for this post