Economist story on whether or not there's really a market for ultra-pricey ear candy. Within that domain, the Frank Nuovo-designed Vertu phone was recently joined by another high-priced market entry from Siemens:
...many luxury brands, observes [ Danielle Keighery of Vertu], subsequently launch more affordable versions of their products. So the gap between Vertu's cheapest phone and Nokia's most expensive may yet be closed. In the longer term, Vertu plans to exploit the emergence of "wearable" technology, as phones morph into jewellery. Here, Vertu may be on to something, says Sofia Ghachem, an analyst at UBS Warburg. Siemens, another handset maker, has just launched a new range of wearable "fashion accessory phones" under the name Xelibri. It will produce two "collections" of Xelibri phones a year, in the hope that marketing phones as fashion items will encourage people to buy new handsets more often. With market penetration at around 80% in western Europe, growth in handset sales has stalled and Siemens believes its new approach could give the industry a much-needed boost.
Link to Economist story, Link to Flash-bloated Vertu website, Link to Infosync news item about Xelibri (with product photo... what inspires these elite-phones' designers to think they each have to reinvent the keypad?) Discuss (thanks, Numair)
I asked Amy Parness, the co-founder of Sparkle Labs, maker of fantastic educational electronics kits, to write a Medium post about gender and the business of being a maker business person. Her terrific essay calls out the problems with “pink girly engineering kits.” From Medium:
Zero UI is the new term for “invisible interfaces”—what happens in the future when all the clicking and tapping and typing is history: “If you look at the history of computing, starting with the jacquard loom in 1801, humans have always had to interact with machines in a really abstract, complex way.” [Fast Company]
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