Thursday, October 13, 2005

The next ringtone

 The next ringtone
By Dan O'Shea
Oct. 13, 2005

I have never quite been able to grasp the popularity of ringtones--not monophonic, polyphonic or even the more recently popular digital realtones. Hearing a snippet of a favorite song or an ironically chosen ringtone (one of my fellow editors has the theme to "Sanford and Son" as his ringer) every time my phone rings just has no pull on me. I always figured there were a lot more people like me, or that even if there weren't, the popularity of ringtones as a downloadable mobile application was going to last about as long as disco did.

Boy, was I wrong. Ringtones continue to be the pre-eminent mobile content application, and with digital realtones, the industry has even figured out how to get customers to pay more for them. Several market studies have shown that the ringtone market continues to grow, and it's still difficult to fathom if it will ever peak and begin to slow down, or if the young demographic that accounts for the majority of ringtone downloads will continue the practice as they age.

With other kinds of content applications emerging, it seems there should be more interesting things out there than ringtones. Or maybe there aren't. Maybe what has happened with ringtones needs to happen with every kind of content application for it to become really popular. Focus on the right market segment, and continue to improve what you started with until you can create a premium revenue opportunity.



Wireless News
Study: Realtones generating the most revenue
By Kevin Fitchard
Oct 12, 2005    

Though polyphonic and monophonic ringtones still account for most downloads in the U.S., revenues from digital realtones have far surpassed them, according to a new study by Telephia.

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