Thursday, September 27, 2007

Disney Mobile Quits

Actually, it's really not that bad; there have been issues with my job since day 1 here, 17 months ago, and this 60-day lay-off period is a rather excellent way to end if it has to end. I hope to finally take some time for myself like I wanted to do when I left Nokia.

From a distance, I know my life this year looks like a country song: partner gone, cat dead, job gone, now all I need is for my truck to break down and my trailer to be re-possessed. But in reality, me getting a kick in the pants to leave Disney Mobile by virtue of Disney Mobile shutting down is not just ok, it's all right. I have been prospecting, but due to the nature of how recruiters find jobs through keyword hits, all I have been offered so far are Symbian C++ coding jobs. My answer has been identical every time: "You couldn't pay me enough to go back to that. I'd rather work a garbage truck." Oddly enough, recruiters do not answer that email.

I guess I won't get a chance to have a snippy exit interview in which I tell management how they obviously are losing the best person ever to work for them!

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Lates Keynote Thoughts

When the Motorola RAZR was introduced in 2004, it's unsubsidized price was somewhere between $800 and $600, with subsidized versions -- 2 year contract required -- starting at $300 if you were very lucky. Right now, about 3 years later, you can practically get it as the prize at the bottom of your box of Wheaties (and Motorola has basically run the design into the ground by overexposure). Let this be a lesson to any high-end mobile phone buyer: you pay your money to have it now.

Also, if the latest rumors are true and the iPod Touch has, or will soon have, Bluetooth, the whole Nokia Tablet effort now has a fierce fierce new competitor. One that has effectively disguised itself from a geeky multimedia device into an iPod "that also can do other stuff". Which is probably a better strategy to make a device like this sell bigtime to consumers.

99c is expensive for a ringtone of music you already have -- in effect you end up paying for the convenience to splice out the 30 seconds of ringing exactly like you want, not like some ringtone aggregator thinks you should want, with a minimum of hassle. Customization is a huge seller for these intensely personal devices, and being able to make your exact ringtone like you want is a win here. Apple did manage to irritate both ends of the market, though: 1) the ringtone-maker costs less than buying a ringtone would if you had already bought the song, so aggregators are being undercut 2) people end up paying twice for music they already have, pissing consumers who know what is going technology-wise off, and mildly annoying the consumers already used to paying two bucks fifty for a ringtone of music they already acquired otherwise. I predict a huge success.