If a major company cuts a line of products from their portfolio, and nobody notices for a month, were they ever really in the market? Dell actually stopped selling their HDD based MP3 players in late December/early January and it wasn’t noticed until now. Since Apple has 70% of the market and a number of manufacturers are making similar deviecs, it probably did not look like an attractive market to be in. Dell has thrived on offering a low-cost solution for PC’s, but they were never at the top of the innovation of the PC itself. Without some differentiation, they were never going to gain any market share in the HDD MP3 arena.
They are still going to offer flash based MP3 players. Maybe they see this as the future of the MP3 market, or maybe they just wanted to have a product available to keep users coming to their site in the hopes of selling them other products as well. Since the flash players are much less expensive, it would be an easier market for them to stay in. In any case, it does prove the theory that no large manufacturer can just copycat a device and hope that their brand recognition will allow them to be profitable with it.
Source: The Register
Posted by Jeff