Digital Portables – Time to cut the cord? Maybe

The fact that we need to use a PC to make our digital portable players – audio and video – become part of our lives is the main reason why the wide-scale adoption hasn’t happened. And perhaps its time for us to cut that umbilical cord. Or so argues, ABI Research analyst Vamsi Sistla. WiFi is going to be the panacea which will help us over come the dependence on PC.

“Today’s so-called portables are still tied by an umbilical cord to the computer and a broadband connection. The industry should address these shortcomings.”

They point out that Wi-Fi networking capabilities are starting to appear in portable audio players.

Although such models are still few in number, they will become a flood in 2006.

And they even point to Thomson’s upcoming product line that will interface the player directly with a home hi-fi system, without the need for an intermediary PC and broadband connection. I think they are right about the dependence on PC has to end, but the big problem is that if we start adding too much to the music players, the already crappy UI is going to get worse. It is not just about adding wifi capabilities – how will it work the music-commerce engines, and storage devices in the home. You know all those little tiny things that in the end make a good consumer experience.!

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