iPhone, where art thou?

The Economist [subscription required] posed some interesting theories about why the much anticipated iPhone from Apple has yet to be announced. Apple would either have to sell the phone at a significant premium, or sell it through operators to take advantage of operator subsidies to customers. Neither is appealing.

But…

There is another option: for Apple to set up as a mobile operator itself, by leasing network capacity from an existing operator. This is known in the industry as a “mobile virtual network operator”, or MVNO. It would give Apple complete control over sales, service, support and billing. But it would be expensive and risky.

Might be risky, but fills in some interesting pieces of the digital strategy. .Mac video uploads, sharing through bedfellow-of-the-week Google, plus hooks to all those nifty Google tools like maps and local directories.

Take it a step further and an Apple MVNO can provide some really interesting features like the ability to program and share with your iTV.

Google, with more to gain, is a more likely phone partner than Disney (already has two MVNOs) or Motorola.

Looking more like Napster every day

The San Jose Mercury News reports that Universal Music is pondering a copyright infringement suit against YouTube. It’s very possible the party’s almost over. Piracy and sharing won’t go away, but YouTube could be significantly diminished.

2 Thoughts on “iPhone, where art thou?

  1. I doubt You Tube is going anywhere. As Universal considers litigation, Warner signs up to build a relationship with You Tube.
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20060918/media_nm/youtube_dc

    What’s I find incredible about this is the idea that You Tube have to pay Warner royalities for the “privilege” of promoting Warner’s artists!

  2. No matter how many companies embrace YouTube, it only takes one suit to bring it all down. Napster looked unstoppable in mid-2000.

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