Researchers say European consumers snub portable video devices

November 8, 2004

A new report finds that consumers in Europe — mostly the UK and France — want music rather than movies while on the go. The analysis of the portable media player market by Jupiter Research found only 13 percent of Europeans want to watch video while out and about, the BBC reported.

By contrast, almost a third are interested in listening to music on a portable player such as an Apple iPod. The firm suggested that electronics manufacturers should avoid hybrid devices and instead make sure music reproduction is good.

Five percent of those questioned said they wanted a player that could play back both music and movies. Only seven percent wanted a player that could handle games and videos.

Dedicated music players are the only established digital media players in Europe today despite their high prices, said Ian Fogg, an analyst with Jupiter Research. Although video players and smart phones are trying to cash in on the success, they face a tough job because of the compromises that had to be made when creating a dual-purpose device.

Portable video players, Fogg predicted, are likely to remain a niche product that will not be able to compete with devices dedicated to music playback.

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