Nokia Takes on Apple’s Digital Music Dominance

Nokia Could Loosen Apple’s Grip On Digital Music:

For years, Microsoft and others have attempted without much success to shake Appleâ??s tight grip on the digital music scene. From subscription services to the Zune, companies have searched for the winning alternative to the iTunes, iPod bundle. Analysts now believe Finlandâ??s Nokia may have a good shot of chipping away at Apple dominance.

More than 80 percent of people would pay for Nokia’s Comes with Music service – particularly when it feels like they are getting tunes for free. Nokia says it will launch the handsets Oct. 17 in Britain.

Strategy Analytics said cost and selection trump brand – even ones so tightly woven as Apple, iPod and iTunes.

Nokia Comes With Music effectively bundles a year subscription of music downloads (PC and mobile) into the price of a handset, analyst Pitesh Patel told Cult of Mac.

Patel said Nokia – the largest handset maker – could overwhelm Apple’s iPhone.

Nokia’s strong distribution and handset marketshare means that it currently sells more music playing devices than Apple, the Strategy Analytics wireless analyst said.

….

It turns out that brand is irrelevant,said Patel.

(Via Cult of Mac.)

I often tell my friends to ‘Bet on Nokia’, and it seems like this is another reason to continue to do just that. It will be interesting to see how this plays out, though I would expect Nokia to continue its world dominance, and expansion in emerging markets. If Nokia can grab some of the Digital music market share, even better.
Why am I rooting for Nokia over Apple? Because Apple, with its DRM and charging 99cents to create a ringtone( and only from songs bought on itunes) smacks of authoritarianism. Let alone the complete handset lockdown of the Iphone, with threats to turn it into an ibrick if you unlock the device then install a sw update. Sigh* With Nokia, you get an unlocked phone that affords you much freedom. You can use whatever song you want as the ringtone (at least that is the case with the E71), you can use your phone as modem, tether it to your laptop. This is particularly important when you are not in broadband rich areas, but are in a wireless-signal-rich locale.
Speaking of the E71 do check out JKE’s series of E71 reviews. 1 mobile blogging, 2, 3 pics , 4, and stay tuned because the man is not done reviewing this phone.

I often have to remind myself to buy music from the Amazon mp3 store instead of Itunes, because I believe DRM (Digital Rights Management) that Itunes still saddles on music is just plain wrong-headed. I am not about to be left in a lurch like the Yahoos who bought tunes from the Yahoo store (forgive me…I couldn’t resist!) To be fair, Itunes does provide DRM free music, but good luck finding the ‘itunes plus’ versions of the songs you want.
So in conclusion…AFM recommends you Bet on Nokia and buy your music on Amazon mp3 download/or other DRM free service. You do reserve the right to ogle at Iphones, but only John Oliver, Anthony Bourdain and Joseph Kabila reserve the right to be awesome. 🙂

In defense of Bono’s Vanity Fair Africa Issue.

In other hot news, Ethan came out swinging on the post ‘Judging a magazine by its cover’, as did Sokari on ‘faking Africa and stories of vanity‘. Bankelele did a quick post on this VF issue june 6th.
I got a hold of 4 copies of Vanity Fair; yes indeed I am collecting all 20.
-Bono and Queen Rania

-Oprah and George Clooney

– Don Cheadle and Iman

-Oprah, Bill and Melinda Gates.

Of these, the only one i can dispense with is the cover of Oprah and George Clooney, sorry George, Don Cheadle and Bono are just waay too hot for me to give up. This aside, i have been reading the criticism of Bono’s work on this issue. I would urge you to go beyond the cover. Some of the content is superb, really it is, i enjoyed it. In the VF issue, I found pictures of people who were at TED Global in Arusha; if this issue had been on newsstands before June 4th when the conference started, it would have been perfect airline reading on the way there. It is still a wonderful read for the rest of the month in my opinion, and I think Bono did a great job on editing it.
Some of the people in the magazine were in TED Global Arusha, and the criticism that Bono should have included Africans on the cover, well, he hadn’t met the Cheetahs before TED Global and the editing of the Vanity fair issue. There is room for improvement as Ethan pointed out, but please allow me to be utterly shallow and point out some of the sections that might get lost in all the Bono bashing going on.

I choose to see this as an opportunity (thanks to TED bringing people together) for cover ideas like Erik Osiakwan and Bono as Ethan proposed. I would add that Andrew Dosunmu should do the photography since Annie Leibovitz had this issue how about Andrew doing a spread for Vanity fair? – Hey, do comment with which pairings would be neat. Ory Okolloh and Obama would be just wonderful wouldn’t it! She can whisper ‘Mzalendo‘ into Obama’s ear like Iman appears to Don Cheadle. (Eric Mwangi with Mrs Obama to make things even 🙂 )

Ok, back to the VF issue… I will use some pics from TED Global to illustrate that Bono did include notable Africans in the VF issue.

Update: Everyone, please start on page 84

Binyavanga Wainaina has an awesome piece on â??Generation Kenyaâ??. (Could VF hurry up and make a link available online? please?) I am tempted to pluck the last line out of the piece, but that wouldnt be good, as you need to read the whole article, every single word of it.

Binyavanga Wainaina at TEDGlobal

Photo by Mweshi

Girls, start with page 184 for a spread of the gorgeous, sexy, African filmmakers including Newton Aduaka.

Newton Aduaka by A Heavens

Photo by Andrew Heavens

Page 124, Uzodinma Iweala Acclaimed author of â??Beasts of No Nationâ??

Uzodinma Iweala

Photo by Jen Brea

Page 180, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

Dr Ngozi Okonjo Iweala

Photo by Andrew Heavens

Rokia Traore is mentioned on page 174 by Youssou Ndour whose playlist you can check out here.

Rokia Traore performing at TED

Picture by Soyapi

Other pages you could jump toâ?¦

Page 187, Picture of John Githongo and text by Parsalelo Kantai. (I have to inject the classic Kenyan tongue twister here. Kantai is pronounced phonetically like â??can tieâ??. So – If Kantai can tie and untie a tie why cant I tie and untie a tie like Kantai can tie and untie a tie?! 🙂 Try it!)

page 194 for the very photogenic networkers of the Africa Channel.

Guys, quickly turn to page 149 for a seductive photo of Terry Pheto the actress from Tsotsi.

Page 152 for comic relief from Chris Rock in the form of a diary from his last trip in Africa, asking Nelson Mandela whether he saw Richard Pryor when he was in Jail.

At the very least, this ought to be interesting, and serve as an alternative ‘table of contents’ to the notorious July VF Issue.

Caveat: The fact that Bono gave me a hug when in Arusha during the DATA tour of Kaloleni Primary School has absolutely nothing to do with this post. Nada, Zilchâ?¦ the fact that he kissed me on my forehead does, just a wee bit.