Editor's Corner: The future of ringtones

As I've said before, ringtones may be big business, but I don't think it can last. Of course, that's just my opinion. Research and Markets has released a new report with some interesting predictions:


  • The report predicts that full-length song downloads will remain popular in Japan, but that the success will not carry over to Europe and the U.S.
  • Covertones--ringtones of popular songs covered by other, less expensive artists--are here to stay.
  • Creating your own ringtones will remain difficult thanks to DRM and other restrictions.
  • Pure-play mobile aggregators are in trouble since operators and content providers are increasingly going direct-to-consumer.
  • The report says, "price differentials between ringtones, online music and mobile music will converge." I take this to mean that ringtone and full-length mobile music tracks will fall in price to around the iTunes $0.99 price.

- Eli