iTunes Phone Will Launch in September
c/o Yahoo News
Cingular will be the carrier. Moto makes the phone. Apple's iTunes lets you play songs transferred from your PC or purchased from the phone. Press conference set for Sept. 7th.

Do You MySpace?
from the Sunday NY Times

Chronicles the start-up of the Web's hotspot for bloggers and music fans ... especially the coveted teen and young adult demos. What started as an alt-Friendster is now THE place new music comes to market.

God on Your iPod c/o The New York Times

Podcasts of Sunday sermons and popular Christian music are reviving the use of radio to spread the Good Word.

Another New Retail Development - Handheld Scanners for Shoppers

As of this month, shoppers at the Container Store in Manhattan can register a credit card number at the counter and get a wireless hand-held scanner. As they walk the aisles, they scan in barcodes on desired items then pay for the purchases, which are delivered to their homes the same day.

Container Store is going the next step, eliminating the need to carry around items, wheel around carts or lug purchases home. That also eliminates physical and psychological limits on how much is purchased in a single trip.

Kraft Offers Recipe Downloads for iPods

“More and more consumers are out of home and away from their Internet connections and we need to determine how to get recipe ideas to them where they are,” said Ian Smith, director of global digital marketing at Kraft. Whether through iPods, cell phones, Blackberrys or PDAs, he said, “you’re going to see these new media get a lot more attention from us in the future.”

21 Million iPods Sold ... So Far

At least according to this NY Times article. But storm clouds gather: the Major Labels are balking at 99 cent pricing and Apple's lock on both the storefront (via iTunes) and the player (iPods currently hold 80 percent of the market).

The Future of Mass Media is Out of Home

Mervyns to install POS music, messaging system
AUGUST 26, 2005 -- San Francisco bay Area department store chain Mervyns will implement a custom, point of sale music and messaging system throughout its stores in 13 states. In partnership with Trusonic, a provider of Internet-based audio solutions, Mervyns will use audio to enhance the in-store experience, complementing their goal of providing a shopping environment that balances style, quality, value and service. In addition, the system will give Mervyns track-able delivery of promotional messages that support in-store sales. Trusonic's Web-based platform was chosen by Mervyns to replace a satellite service; the new digital player (MBOX) is "no touch" at the store level, and offers digital audio programming without volume fluctuations or interruptions in the music flow by promotional inserts. "We wanted in-store music that appealed to our customers and enhanced their shopping experience by making it fun, entertaining and comfortable," said Terry McDonald, senior vice president of marketing for Mervyns, in a statement.

Link to story from original source here.

The Future of Advertising from Inc Magazine

Kroger to play encoded in-store audio at Houston Stores for retail trial

AUGUST 25, 2005 -- Beginning in September, 100 Houston-area stores of Kroger, the Cincinnati-based supermarket retailer, will use embedded audio programming from In-Store Broadcasting Network, which already provides an in-store music service and broadcast advertising network for Kroger in Houston.
The audio programming will be embedded with unique Arbitron Portable People Meter identification codes that track in-store media exposure. These codes are inaudible and can only be detected by a Portable People Meter. When an Arbitron Portable People Meter survey participant enters one of these retail outlets, the meter will detect the codes and report that the individual has been exposed to its in-store audio programming.
“By adding PPM (Portable People Meter) codes to Kroger’s in-store audio in Houston, we’ll be able to demonstrate how the PPM can gauge the store traffic that advertising generates,” said Pierre Bouvard, president, Portable People Meters, Arbitron Inc., in a statement. “We would be able to measure the retail visits as easily as we measure the audience that is exposed to the stations that carry the advertising for the retailer. This will enable PPM to provide powerful measures of return on investment and accountability by correlating local media exposure with retail store traffic.”
The Portable People Meter system uses a passive audience measurement device--about the size of a cell phone--to track consumer exposure to media and entertainment, including broadcast, cable and satellite television; terrestrial, satellite and online radio as well as cinema advertising and many types of place-based electronic media. Carried throughout the day by randomly selected survey participants, the PPM device can track when and where they watch television, listen to radio as well as how they interact with other forms of media and entertainment. Previously, Arbitron announced that Best Buy, Gap, Gallery Furniture, National CineMedia and Old Navy are also participating in the Houston PPM demonstration.

Kraft Recipes on Your iPod
Read the article on ClickZ

A new marketing application from Kraft is leveraging the iPod phenomenon in a way that goes beyond podcasting (define). Owners of the ubiquitous device who download the company's "Greatest Hits of Summer" widget can carry a library of over 100 Kraft-inspired recipes with them wherever they go.

The download, promoted at, offers grilling ideas, desserts, and additional recipes featuring Kraft ingredients. Users can browse recipes using the iPod's scroll wheel and look up ingredients while at the grocery store.

"Because Kraft consumers have busy lives and demanding schedules, we liked the idea of being able to provide them with food ideas and resources wherever they might need them," Ian Smith, director of global digital marketing at Kraft, told ClickZ News.

The Kraft recipe files use the iPod Notes feature, stored separately from audio files on the player and take up less than one megabyte of space. Smith said Kraft will develop additional downloads if there is continued positive consumer response and interest.

"In evaluating this opportunity, we considered iPod's broad appeal, personality and leadership in the digital music player category," said Smith.

The promotion is one of a limited number of iPod applications that don't use audio, an area that may be ripe for innovation. The iPod Photo is particularly well-suited to graphical development. One entrepreneur has made subway maps for several cities available for download at

Kroger to launch in-store broadcasting network
AUGUST 17, 2005 -- Supermarket chain The Kroger Co., Cincinnati, today announced it has entered into a multi-year agreement with InStore Broadcasting Network to provide a television network for customers in more than 2,500 Kroger-owned stores across the country. The satellite-delivered network uses plasma and LCD screens located in key locations throughout the store to deliver information about new products, services, cooking tips and special promotions. Kroger community service and relevant entertainment segments are also highlighted. Installation of the network will take place over the next 18 months. It is projected that more than 68 million shoppers will be exposed to in-store media every week.
- Link to DDI article
- Link to article

Women Are Underserved in Mobile Entertainment
Click here for the complete article c/o Wireless Review magazine

"...most recent data showing a negligible 47/53% split between women and men. This data, as well as other consumption trends we have observed, indicate that women represent a significant opportunity for growth in mobile entertainment, as they have been wholly underserved."

" shows that women are downloading 46% of all mobile content, and they are downloading about half of the ringtones being consumed in the U.S."

"...only 10% of titles offered are of the universally popular and easy-to-play arcade puzzle and card games genres, which are also the most common genres downloaded by women."

The Single Most Important News Item of the Day
Here you go!

ManiaTV Airs Only on the Web
The "First"(?) 24/7 Broadband TV Network -- ManiaTV c/o the Charlotte Observer

Use this link to see ManiaTV for yourself. Its founder says he waited for broadband penetration to reach 20 million households. Check. Programming targets college-aged youth. Check. Studio "jocks" use chat, IM and webcams to interact with the audience in real time. Check. Programming includes music videos , lots of talking about whatever and some reality-ish shows. Check.

Looks good.

Watching TV on Your Broadband PC
from The Charlotte Observer

Here's a quick read that sites a listing of factoids showing just how prevalent this trend is becoming. For example -

Five million people watched the Live 8 concerts, of which there were 10 around the world, from Philadelphia and five other cities last month on

The clip of Tom Cruise's June 24 meltdown on the "Today" show was downloaded 2.5 million times the week after it happened.

4.4 million people clicked onto the day of the July 7 London terrorist bombings for continuous coverage.

Web access may be as close as an electrical outlet
Read the store here

Those wanting high-speed access to the Internet essentially have two choices: Buy it from a cable TV company or from the local telephone company.

But a third option stands in the wings for many consumers: the electric company.

The idea seems simple: Millions of miles of power lines already run to nearly every home in the United States. Just send an Internet signal through them and everyone can be connected.

Broadband over Power Lines (BPL) is beginning to move beyond small trial projects to deploying systems for large communities.

Besides competing with cable and phone companies on price and speed, BPL also faces challenges from other technologies, including efforts to bring fiber-optic cable into homes and WiMAX, a wireless signal that can carry for several miles.

TIVO offers movies on demand via broadband
Or, How I finally figured out Podcasting, but now I'm going to be confused again

Read the article here.
TiVo Inc. on Monday launched a trial service that lets subscribers with high-speed Internet connections download to their digital video recorders programming from the Independent Film Channel.

The service is the first of a series of broadband features that are expected to be deployed to TiVo Series2 subscribers beginning in the fall.

TiVo subscribers will be able to download the programs before their premiere. In addition, IFC is packaging exclusive content, including outtakes and other unaired footage.

Hey! That sure sounds a lot like DVD-on-demand to me!!!!
In fact, what's the diff? Podcasting lets you download "radio" content and play it back on demand ("timeshifting"); now TIVO lets you download "video" content and play it back on demand ("ibid"). Next ... transfering the "video" content to a portable device (such as Sony PSP or an upcoming iPod; or maybe your phone) so you can take it "to go."

Dumber Alarm Clocks = Smart Use of Technology
From USA Today c/o Yahoo! News

During my travels last week (Cincinnati and Oakland/SF/Bay Area), I was pleasantly surprised to find a little extra hook-up wire dangling from the alarm clock in my hotel room (both were Hilton brands). It's a plug for my iPod. And it worked!

Web-Based RSS Feed Reader - Try It

I know it's still a bit on the techie edge to configure your own RSS Feed reader, so try this out to see basically how RSS (Really Simple Syndication) works.

Look ... why bother bookmarking your favorite news sites, trade mag sites and blogs when every time the site updates its content you can see it in one consolidated list?

Really ... Simple ... Syndication ...

The problem is that Microsoft has yet to support RSS via its Windows operating system. You can purchase a $50 upgrade for Outlook, but that ridiculous. Stand-alone RSS reader software is readily available as both freeware and low-cost shareware. But ... then you've got to get a wee-bit techie and configure it yourself.

That's where the adoption drop-off rate soars. Here is a listing of RSS software that's quite sufficient to get anyone started.

If you're using the FireFox browser from Mozilla, then you've got built-in "Live Bookmarks" to read RSS Feeds. Or, if you're using Safari on MacOS X Tiger (not the earlier Jaguar or Panther iterations), then you also have built-in "live bookmarks" to read your Feeds.

Strange "Carbon Based" Technology
Especially for anyone in the promotions end of the business ...

Check this out: A static cling that sticks to almost *any* surface, even brick, wood and stucco. Think of the guerilla placement possiblities.
- ClingRite by Clingers

Visible World - Segmentation Comes to TV Commercials
It's the revenge of the database marketing nerds; "All marketing will be database marketing"

    Articles to reference:
  • InformITV
  • Forbes
  • TMCNet Listing of Related Articles
  • Business Week
  • Dima Group consultancy
  • Forrester Research
    Summary: Visible World's ad delivery system can be used to enhance both broadcast and cable commercials, but it has the most to offer in a cable environment. There it reaches approximately 28 million cable households — by far the most of any new TV ad system. The primary advertising benefits of Visible World are its ability to dynamically update, customize, and target ads. On the downside, the system isn't currently used in conjunction with cable network inventory, and it requires some changes to the creative process. Auto, retail, and packaged goods firms have the most to gain from the system as it is currently available. If the household-level targeting version of Visible World wins deployment, database marketers in industries like financial services will come calling.

The Artists Den It's a traveling concert experience featuring singer-songwriters who perform in small, intimate spaces exclusively. Venues have included Tiffany and the Apple Store in NYC. Schubas in Chicago. Read more at their site.

Might be something to this - Echospin

About Echospin

Echospin is a state-of-the-art digital delivery platform that combines online media packaging, distribution and ecommerce technology.

This platform enables artists, labels and advertisers to sell and deliver music directly to their customers via a wide variety of distribution channels, formats and physical media types. It accomplishes all of these seemingly complex activities with surprisingly little effort.

Echospin is offered as a fully hosted service, designed to plug in easily to virtually any existing Internet technology or traditional mass media. This makes it possible to provide a highly sophisticated user experience and product delivery while retaining control of merchandising, price, branding and business rules without the need to purchase or deploy new technology.

What makes Echospin unique is its elegance and simplicity. It provides unprecedented automation and ease-of-use, creating new opportunities for independent artists, major consumer brands, publishers and many others.

Another Popular Blog-writer's Site
It's called Xanga

Make Your Own CD Case

How many times have you made a playlist in iTunes? You may have even burned a CD to play on ... heavens! ... a "hi fi" audio system. But then you need a slip case or paper inserts for those pesky plastic jewel cases. Well then ... here y'go!

For you more ambitious techies ... here's an Applescript that automates the making of said slip case.