That sound you hear might just be the sound of mark downs on DVDs thanks to Apple’s big news that they will begin selling movies via iTunes, and in the first quarter next year release a set top box that will allow you to watch them on the big screen in your living room. Jobs certainly has the power to shake things up. But the news today focuses on Apple taking over the living room. What about the mobile warrior? Kevin Tofel has already checked out the new iTunes movies (they are now at a 640 x 480 resolution, another new Apple development) on his UMPC and given it a thumbs up with a wise nod to the fact that this is a step on the way to hi-def content delivered over broadband. With Zune around the corner (and still many questions there) there certainly will be a battle on the entertainment front. Will consumers benefit? I think so, in the long run, especially if, as the speculation goes, that the Zune software will scan iTunes and allow you to move your purchased content over to another device. That is not a sure thing, and I can’t think Apple will quietly concede that battle, although in the long run both Apple and Microsoft can be big winners by striking a deal, in my opinion.
I’m with Kevin, though, and my recent experience living without my much cherished iPod for awhile leads me that way. Although I’m missing out on some music at the moment, I’ve been quite content with what I can play legally on my PPC 6700. Why buy another iPod (or a Zune device for that matter) if I can have the same media experience on a UMPC equipped with whatever software service that I choose? Why lug multiple devices around when one will do? I suppose battery life plays a key part in that answer, as it does with most mobile solutions.
So here’s the question. What are your mobile entertainment plans given what’s ahead?