The rapid advance of smartphones’ capabilities means many of us no longer carry around a separate mp3 player. But can a phone perform as well, and are you ready to ditch your portable media player completely?
Statistics from a recent Mintel report indicated that the smartphone could be replacing the stand-alone portable media player. A third of us listening to music on our phones, compared to just 12% using a dedicated portable media player.
So, is it the end for the humble mp3 player?
With so many of us owning a smartphone these days – be it an Apple, Android or Blackberry device – we effectively have a media player in our pocket at all times.
Why have two devices when one will do?
Carrying around a separate product simply to play music seems a little archaic, especially as today’s mobiles are a lot more user friendly than they used to be when it comes to playing music. Most devices have done away with propriety headphone sockets, so headphones can easily be plugged into phones without the need for an adapter or the cheap sets that come with the phone.
A large proportion of smartphones also have expandable memory storage, through micro SD cards, meaning that even the most dedicated music fan won’t run out of space.
Add to that the plethora of music apps available to stream content, such as Spotify and Last FM, and you don’t even need to have your favourite music stored locally any more.
Not just mp3 players at risk
Then there’s cost. If you buy your mobile on a contract, you might perceive it as being ‘free’. Of course, we end up paying for the device over the time our contract runs, but on the surface it may seem a lot more attractive than paying for a portable media player out-right.
It’s not just mp3 players that are in danger of being discarded. Handheld games consoles and digital cameras are also under threat from the convergence of mobile phones.
Do you still use your mp3 player, or has your phone replaced it?