Zune price: $249.99

Microsoft is ready to launch Zune, its competitor to iPod, in November. The price has been set. This competitor to iTunes will be in place for the holiday gift buying season and the biggest and most anticipated challenge to Apple will be under way. But Zune doesn't seem to have enough different features to make a serious dent in iPod's domiance of the mobile music device market. If being able to share songs for three days wirelessly with others is important then this device rules. If. There is even some speculation that once a&hellip

Zune price: $249.99

Microsoft is ready to launch Zune, its competitor to iPod, in November. The price has been set. This competitor to iTunes will be in place for the holiday gift buying season and the biggest and most anticipated challenge to Apple will be under way. But Zune doesn't seem to have enough different features to make a serious dent in iPod's domiance of the mobile music device market. If being able to share songs for three days wirelessly with others is important then this device rules. If. There is even some speculation that once a&hellip

Context-Linked TV Ads: No More Bathroom Breaks

The Wall Street Journal has a great piece (9/9/06) on a new trend in Japan where TV ads are becoming part of the show (subscribe to the online Journal, it's got one of the best media sections). A big agency and large TV network have teamed up for this latest way to trick viewers into postponing the potty, relieving them from the TiVo and other tools of avoidance viewers have developed. The ads and mixed with content. And according to the article (WSJ doesn't allow links). You can't not pay attention because valuable parts of the plot are revealed while products are being featured. As reporter Amy Chozick writes it, "...In one scene,&hellip

YouTube Buyers: Mark Cuban Calling All “Morons”

Mark Cuban, the Internet billionaire and wacky Dallas Mavericks owner says anyone who would want to buy YouTube is a "moron". A moron Cuban is not. No one has better timing as he proved when he unloaded Broadcast.com right before the Internet bubble burst. Now Cuban warns that anyone who buys YouTube will be "sued into oblivion". And that the only reason it hasn't happened so far is that there is no real money to go after. Cuban makes an interesting point. YouTube&hellip

Media Gets It Wrong on Howard Stern

Ad Age wrote a piece September 24 titled "Howard Stern's Ad Rates On Sirius Slump to Low of $5,000". Their point -- apparently -- that Stern's live-read spots sell to advertisers for between $5,000-10,000. The gist of the article is that Stern can't get the reported $30,000 he used to get when he worked for CBS/Infinity on terrestrial radio. To add some needed perspective: Stern is Sirius Satellite Radio. It's paying him $500 million plus stock incentives for selling Sirius to the public. So far it has worked. Sirius is closing the subscriber gap with rival XM.&hellip

YouTube Overpriced At $1.5 Billion

The New York Post is reporting the price tag for YouTube is around $1.5 billion. Several media giants including News Corp, the owner of MySpace are reported to be interested, but not at that inflated number. YouTube is arguably the hottest toy of Gen Y right now. Even with the short life span of Internet start up companies these days the growth of YouTube seems assured through the 2008 presidential elections. Catching politicians looking stupid in an on-demand format should keep the interest growing until the polls close. Beyond&hellip

Goodbye Facebook!

The sell off is coming with news that Yahoo is in serious discussions to purchase Facebook for an estimated $1 billion. The Wall Street Journal reports that Viacom and Microsoft were also interested in this student social network. You can't blame founder Mark Zuckerberg for taking the money, but you have to wonder if this doesn't spell the end to the Facebook fickle college students love. Some of my USC students say when Facebook takes on the qualities of MySpace, they're over it. News Corp purchased MySpace for $650 million and is in the process of monetizing it "big business" style. Facebook could become a corporate wanna be for&hellip

Free Satellite Radio Subscriptions For Everyone in College

My friend Lee Abrams barely leaves campus and I am spending his money. XM's Chief Creative Officer was the featured guest at USC Thornton School's debut of its "Hot Topics" program today. Abrams was warmly received as he explained the mission of XM's version of satellite radio. What was somewhat surprising was the curiosity on the part of students. It's almost as if they had either not considered satellite radio as an option for them or let price discourage them from getting it. Cost was a factor -- the fact that it costs anything at all. Still, from the wide ranging discussion that ensued Gen Y could be an eventual market for&hellip

Warner Catches the YouTube Virus

Warner Records was not acting like a record label when it inked a shrewd deal with the wildly popular YouTube today. Warner was looking more like a viral marketer. Unlike Universal which is getting ready to sue YouTube unless it cracks down on copyright infringement, Warner is making love. YouTube comes up with a royalty-tracking system that will detect when YouTube videos are using copyrighted material. Warner can then review the videos and decide whether to let them play or reject them. Warner overcomes its copyright problem. Gets to monetize its videos through advertising. Even YouTube gets to make money that it sorely needs.&hellip

Fidelity Not Hurting Ipod

The lack of CD quality sound has not hurt Apple in its five years of dominating the mobile music device market. Of course there are a minority of audiophiles who complain, but not enough have resisted the many incarnations of the ubiquitous iPod. When Apple's iTV gets up and running -- probably in the first months of 2007 -- Apple will be defying high definition, digital quality and all the things the industry thinks consumers hold sacred. Apple is wagering that convenience will trump fidelity. And they are probably right. Making a consumers music, movies and video portable and giving them a chance to play it seamlessly on a large&hellip