Posted by: nickgerlich | September 6, 2007

See Me, Feel Me, Touch Me

Sometimes you’d better be careful what you ask for, because you just might get it.

Yesterday I lamented that we might need more gadgets to help us juggle the bowling pins of our lives. I guess Apple’s Steve Jobs heard me (or was reading my blog), because he obliged me by serving up a platter of cool stuff straight from the core of the media innovation leader.

Among the headlines:

  • a new Nano model with video capabilities
  • a remix of colors for the Shuffle
  • the new iPod Touch, in 8gb ($299) and 16gb ($399)
  • oh yeah…and 33% off on the iPhone

new iPod TouchThe one that got my attention was the iPod Touch, which is basically an iPhone without the phone. It features a 3.5″ screen, and has wifi capabilities and all the bells and whistles of the phone. It will also alert you whenever you come within range of a Starbucks with wifi, and allow you to download whatever song they’re playing at the moment via the new iTunes WiFi store.

Just what I needed. An electronic beacon to point out the coffee.

Yesterday’s announcements represent Apple’s holiday marketing campaign, and it is a mixed bag for sure. It is the first time in memory that I have seen Apple discount a product that is not scheduled to be replaced. The fact that the iPhone is down $200 a scant 10 weeks following its introduction tells me something.

And that “something” is that they aren’t selling like they oughta.

According to Jobs, Apple has sold about 1 million of the pricey-yet-sexy phones since 29th June, which is quite a bit lower than the initial 3 million units they anticipated selling in the summer. Some analysts had predicted sales of 10 million units by this Christmas. I suppose we will have to see if the price adjustment helps out.

Never mind that it is no secret Google is playing with cell phones, and an announcement is probably not far off. Knowing Google’s pricing model, the phone and the service will be free…as long as you do not mind a bunch of pesky GoogleAds on your screen.

While I am still not motivated to run out and scoop up an iPhone, I will probably be lining up soon for the Touch model (it ships later this month). My current model (a 60gb) is looking pretty beaten up. While it still works OK, I am ready for an upgrade. And the wifi capabilities are nice. Sure, its hard disk is quite a bit smaller, but different iPods for different situations, right?

I think that is the same argument my wife uses with shoes.

As always, the blogosphere is abuzz over Apple’s latest announcements. This is Apple’s style. They feed the rumor mill for weeks and months, letting the hype grow organically. Then Steve comes along and gives the official proclamation, sending customers scurrying to their nearest Apple retailer (the only possible exception being the iPhone). Apple’s retail price maintenance is legendary (once again, please excuse the iPhone), and its shareholders love those profit margins.

Now I just have to adopt the same shopping tactic my wife uses with shoes, and figure out how to sneak this baby home.

Dr “Listening To You I Get The Music” Gerlich


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