Digital audio players from brands such as Creative, iRiver, Dell, Samsung and even Sony can't compete with Apple's flagship, the iPod. Will Nokia be able to compete with the iPod with its upcoming Nokia N91 - despite the higher cost?
The Nokia N91 will feature a 4GB internal hard drive, a 2 megapixel digital camera and a 3.5 mm headphone jack. The phone also supports 3G services, including wireless downloading services. It is designed to play audio with music control buttons on a faceplate that slides down to reveal the phone's keypad.
The company also claims that users will be able to send music to others via e-mail, bluetooth and MMS. So this phone might actually introduce wireless p2p but there are also some problems:
While it may be easy to share a file between two phones of the same type that use the same carrier, it will be much more difficult between different phones on separate networks. Diverse file formats, lack of carrier interoperability and digital-rights-management concerns are all expected to limit the ability to share music wirelessly.
"Forget it," industry consultant Richard Siber says. "It's just too problematic."
Nokia's N91 will be compatible with all popular audio formats, except iTunes. The only thing that will likely limit the market penetration of the Nokia N91 is it high cost. It is said that this phone will cost around 700EUR ($900), so with carrier subsidies it will likely still cost more than $500. Not really that competitive with a $199 iPod mini.