Mobile Operators Could Stop Motorola-iTunes Deal, Experts Warn

Cellular operators could deal a severe blow to Tuesdayis announced plan between Apple and Motorola to let consumers put songs bought on the iTunes Music Store onto future Motorola, MP3-ready phones if it doesnit get part of the revenue stream from the sale of music cuts, industry experts and analyst are speculating.

Jupiter Research analyst Ian Fogg and John Strand, CEO of mobile research firm Strand Consult, told London-based NewMediaAge magazine they believe cellular operators will refuse to stock and sell Motorola handsets featuring the ability to play MP3 files if they arenit included in the financial rewards, thereby putting a halt to similiar deals with other music providers and cellular phone companies.

"The deal implies that fixed broadband connections are a better way to deliver high quality music downloads than mobile networks," said Mr. Fogg. "It suggests that operators hoping to profit from music downloads will be bypassed by PC transfer services like this."

"Itis a mistake to bypass the mobile value chain where content owners are making money and mobile operators (are) missing out," Mr. Strand commented.