Fidelity Not Hurting Ipod

The lack of CD quality sound has not hurt Apple in its five years of dominating the mobile music device market. Of course there are a minority of audiophiles who complain, but not enough have resisted the many incarnations of the ubiquitous iPod. When Apple's iTV gets up and running -- probably in the first months of 2007 -- Apple will be defying high definition, digital quality and all the things the industry thinks consumers hold sacred. Apple is wagering that convenience will trump fidelity. And they are probably right. Making a consumers music, movies and video portable and giving them a chance to play it seamlessly on a large screen (with the addition of a $300 device) will enable them. iTV will not kill the DVD market. In fact, it will probably stimulate it assuming DVD pricing becomes attractive. Industry executives may someday realize that iPod use is a convenient, Low-Fi form of storage first and foremost. It hasn't yet replaced CDs even as it continues to gain popularity. Record labels have hurt CD sales more than Apple by stiff pricing and by offering a weaker stable of releases -- the result of corporate cutbacks resulting from consolidation and inability to see digital downloading as a sales tool (whether free or paid).