The more I ponder it, the more it becomes apparent that Avid is about to undergo significant changes. A new CEO with experience in the the private equity world was not likely brought in to maintain the status quo.
Last year a group of private equity investors were looking to take Avid private. The rumored plan was to sell off video unit to Thompson or Autodesk, send the consumer stuff to Corel, and find a home for storage with Dell, EMC, or some other player in the enterprise storage market. That would leave Avid with just audio – not a bad thing. It’s the only area where Avid has a strong brand throughout the market from consumer (M-Audio) to pro (DigiDesign). The newer, streamlined audio company could then go public after a year or two, and everyone would pocket a chunk of change.
The landscape remains much the same. Such a plan has surely crossed the new CEO’s mind. I can’t imagine many shareholders having a problem with this strategy after the recent years of share price stagnation.
Kudos to Dean Velez for his re-branding of The Anvel to Motion Graphics Lab. Nice site and still lots of free stuff to download. Support Dean’s generous spirit and pay visit.
From the “Gosh that guy mentions Steve Audette a lot” department: Steve sends along this helpful link for those looking for sound effects in a hurry. Sound Snap’s a better than expected free sfx sharing site. A lot like the Stock.xchng for stock photos.
Also Steve’s appearing at the next Boston Avid Users Group meeting to talk about his editing heroics at Frontline. If you’re in Boston November 14, never mind. The weather sucks here then. Go somewhere else to catch Steve.
Google to launch phone platform
And I’m overdue for a prediction. As mentioned in the Wall Street Journal, Google’s expected to announce its gPhone initiative in the next few weeks.
“The most likely scenario from a Google perspective is to build some, if you will, inspirational platform [applications]; but primarily focus on getting third parties to do it because that’s where the innovation will come from,” said Google CEO Eric Schmidt, speaking at the All Things Digital conference in May. He said that “the new model of these phones is going to be person-to-person” with people exchanging videos and other types of data.
Prepare to be underwhelmed. Consumers want a phone and developers want a platform. Spare us the inspiration. And what’s Google going to bring to the table that Microsoft (Windows Mobile), Apple (iPhone), and Nokia (Ovi) don’t already have? This space is crowded already. Google fans retort search was pretty full when Google entered the fray. Search plays to Google’s strength – algorithms. Mobile plays to Google’s weakness – UI design. Note to users: Gmail’s UI sucks.
Google should continue working with mobile platform developers as it has with Apple to get YouTube and Google Maps on the iPhone. Notice how much more usable both are after a nip and tuck at the Cupertino clinic.