Opinions of large dissatisfaction on ROKR sales come from overseas by Bloomberg analysts, careful observers of the financial markets. "ROKR flop", it could be condensed, in the tight slang of text messages, but the causes that are leading to failure are certainly worth more than two words.
The first fault, candidly admits Ed Zander, CEO of Motorola, was to not specify carefully what was being sold: a phone or an iPod? Marketing error, then? Certainly, reserve plans have already been developed to correct a cheerful, youthful, high-impact, but unclear advertising campaign. Not everyone, in fact, would have understood that the Motorola mobile could only contain 100 songs, an even lower number than the iPod Shuffle of 512 MB.
It is also true that maybe some geek could have found a way to eliminate this limitation, appropriately reprogramming the phone's firmware (as is so fashionable in recent times) and using larger memory cards, but frankly who would want to expose yourself to the risk of damage to the telephone or to the dispute of the violation of the contract with the telephone company, when at the same price ($ 249) the iPod nano offers 1000, ten times more?
Already the birth of ROKR was tainted by those malfunctions so invisible to the Apple user, well used to always connecting their devices to the computer and seeing them recognized (and working) in the blink of an eye. Malfunctions that had forced Cupertino to the rapid release of a specific corrective update, which certainly had not pleased the very first buyers.
A spokesman for Cingular, the only American telephone provider to offer ROKR, claims to be satisfied with the sales, but at Apple they prefer not to comment. While the future of Motorola seems very busy, with the next release of the RAZR successor, another mobile phone of great success, and of the “iRadio” service that will allow you to transfer music from your home stereo or from the car radio of your car to your cell phone, instead, the present seems to thicken with black clouds.
It is not long ago that the Schaumburg company allegedly sued its former president and CEO, Mike Zafirovski, who was about to move to Nortel Networks. In doing so, Zafirovski would violate the non-competition agreement stipulated at Act of its entry into Motorola, being Nortel a direct antagonist of the house of the two wings. Should the lawsuit continue and Nortel loses, the former CEO should wait for at least two years before entering the new company. The stakes are so high that Nortel has already proposed an agreement to Motorola to settle the matter.