The sad state of mobile in the USA
Mobile content and services, which are for the most part overhyped and overpriced, are failing in the USA. All the buzzwords, deals and massive marketing efforts will not change the fact that until more people can access mobile content at broadband speeds at a reasonable, fixed rate, they will not use it.
Sure, Blackberry usage is on the rise and business use of mobile for data access to email and other services is working, but adoption and use by the broader consumer marketplace is less than exciting. The latest sign that things aren't living up to the lofty expectations set by brands, analysts and mobile networks is from none other than sports leader ESPN.
Of all the things that should work in terms of mobile content, sports stands as good a chance as any of the other categories. Sure, directory look-ups for local content are the easy win, but when you think about the types of mobile content and information along with the audience segments most likely to take advantage of it, sports news and highlights seems like a good bet.
However, the WSJ reports that ESPN will seek a new strategy when it shuts down the mobile venture and several blogs and analysts agree that this is bad news for mobile media in the US.
The Washington Post reports: “Many analysts are skeptical whether it’s a business model that can succeed … given the marketing muscle of the national players. That a brand as popular and well-funded as ESPN couldn’t make it work adds to that doubt, particularly since Mobile ESPN developed a uniquely sophisticated mobile service compared with the content offered on regular cell phones.”
In time, I am sure that it will succeed. For now, however, marketers should proceed with caution and tempered expectations.
Technorati Tags: marketing, mobile, espn
Saturday, September 30, 2006
I think that one company who might succeed is Amp'd mobile. They are focusing on mobile content delivery not the content itself...Sadly, I can't think of any mobile content I would like to see on an Amp'd mobile handset.
# posted by : 9:23 PM, October 01, 2006
Yes, Amp'd looks interesting, and their site/marketing is slick.
However, their minimum rate package is $114/month (up to a whopping $150/month), and that is insane.
The vast majority of 14 to 25 year-olds cannot afford this, and as this is clearly not a business product, they're the ones who need to adopt and use it.
# posted by George Nimeh : 8:00 AM, October 02, 2006