New Zune colors and functions in the works, but also new consumption ideas

The Discussion

  • User profile image

    Glad to see that Microsoft will ramp up promotion of the Zune.
    I was wondering where it went Tongue Out

  • User profile image

    For a current business models study, it's an interesting question. However...

    I'm thinking a bit further into the future.  And not even from a better business origin point.  But what happens when the world starts to understand that it can't keep making cheap disposable hardware?  There's a finite amount of resources, and even more, a finite amount of damage we can do by throwing a large portion of those now processed (toxic) resources into dumps.  What if that device now has to both last longer, and therefore be designed for service?  How does that affect this model?  If the content and distribution end is digital and cheaper to operate, do we end up seeing the exact opposite of what is proposed here?  Where the hardware and its corresponding 'hard-service' become much more expensive proportionally, and the the 'soft-services' become much less expensive.  Somewhat similar to the European mobile market, but coming from a slightly different reasoning.

    The thing to consider at that point is how it plays out with the whole hardware-software scaling relationship.  In order to keep that notion of "progress" functional, the hardware would also have to be designed not just for service but for upgradability.  If not, it sparks another conversation about design under constraint.  Would we possibly, eventually get better software if the designers of it had to do amazing things with the hardware presented to them? 

    Welcome to the can of worms that is a meaninful and well directed blog post.  Good work.

  • User profile image
    JD Lewin

    Thanks for the compliement Smiley

    I think that in the reasonably near-term (let's say a decade) there will be a big push towards creating hardware in a sustainable way at every point in the process from idea to delivery, and that will be at odds with doing things the old (and cheap) way. When you do start to think further out however, I think you're spot on; the ultimate breakdown of the cost equation of anything that has both a physical and non-physical components will always lean toward the physical elements costing more.

    That said you've got a lot of steps in between, and I don't think economics will let you skip right to the end scenario. There's going to be more and more discussion about the cost of data, as it relates to bandwidth but more importantly energy, through the end of this decade and probably deep into the next. Until we have a solution that can provide more stable energy costs, that part will continue to be unstable and therefore more expensive.

    Storage and bandwidth get cheaper all the time. Manufacturing will get slightly more expensive as organizations try to embrace the 'right' way to operate as opposed to the 'best' way, but ultimately those costs are small fish. Energy isn't getting cheaper anytime soon, and that's what's going to keep us from living the Federation of Planets lifestyle Wink

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