Jason Ball's TechBytes

Technology & Venture Capital. Early stage venture capital news mixed with personal views and comments

Alarm:clock expands to Europe

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"If you work in Silicon Valley or NYC and wonder why you might need coverage of the European startup scene, ask yourself this: would you like to have known about Skype when it was founded in 2003 or MySQL in 1999? We know you don’t have time to learn German and French so that you can follow the blogosphere in those languages… And though your humble editors get to the Continent with some frequency, we just don’t have that much extra space on the a:c corporate jet. Hence, we bring you our European counterpart, alarm:clock euro."

Add it to your feeds here.

Filed under: Technology, Venture Capital

The Long Snout Business Model [Updated]

Good post over at O’Reilly Radar on the “Long Snout”. Don’t know what that is yet? Well, get ready for the onslaught of Long Snout graphs…

I had mentioned a model similar to O’Reilly’s “Rough Cuts” to my friend C.K., author of the O’Reilly hacks book “PSP Hacks” (free hacks available here). However, the good part of the discussion is about the business model:

“In short, you can buy online-only access to the Rough Cuts directly from us for about 50% off the expected list price of the final book; you can pre-order the print book for about 35% off the list price; and you can buy both together for only about 10% more than the list price.

What’s so important about this business model is that it puts a significant price on online access. One of our biggest concerns as we move to an online information economy is the development of business models that cover the cost of content development. Models that treat print as primary and assign small value to an online copy, or give it away for free (as some publishers have done over the years) will end up on the trash heap once online access becomes the preferred mode (as it already is for many people.) While we also need to reduce the cost of developing content, quality doesn’t come for free.”

Cross reference this with the fact that NBC shows on iTunes have increased ratings and “drive new viewers” – and you might begin to think that digital distribution is good for business…

[Update] Further cross reference. The Wall Street Journal reports (sub. req.) this morning on Madonna’s hit “Hung Up”:

The song achieved the No. 1 spot in 29 countries simultaneously in 2005 with 40% less radio airplay in the U.S. than the average No. 1 hit, Warner Music said.

“I think it’s not inaccurate to say that the mobile campaign, and the ring tone in particular, was more effective in launching the single than radio airplay,” said Michael Nash, a senior vice president at Warner Music

Filed under: Technology

Has AIM taken NASDAQ’s crown?

John Polden of MTI Partners asks this question in the latest edition of Real Deals.

The comments are the result of a study conducted by London Business School and MTI Partners: AIM- Friend or Foe. A few highlights indicate that if AIM hasn’t taken NASDAQ’s crown, it is certainly heir to the throne:

- More than 60 early stage companies IPO yearly, more than seen on Nasdaq over the past few years

- Floating on AIM costs approximately 50% less than Nasdaq

- No market cap restrictions. The average market cap was £28m (Approx. $50m USD) for 2004.

- Lighter regulations than Sarbanes-Oxley

I’ve pointed out previously that AIM is one of several reasons why early stage investing is arguably more attractive in the UK than in the US. John’s comments only strengthen that argument.

Filed under: Venture Capital

Has AIM taken NASDAQ’s crown?

John Polden of MTI Partners asks this question in the latest edition of Real Deals.

The comments are the result of a study conducted by London Business School and MTI Partners: AIM- Friend or Foe. A few highlights indicate that if AIM hasn’t taken NASDAQ’s crown, it is certainly heir to the throne:

- More than 60 early stage companies IPO yearly, more than seen on Nasdaq over the past few years

- Floating on AIM costs approximately 50% less than Nasdaq

- No market cap restrictions. The average market cap was £28m (Approx. $50m USD) for 2004.

- Lighter regulations than Sarbanes-Oxley

I’ve pointed out previously that AIM is one of several reasons why early stage investing is arguably more attractive in the UK than in the US. John’s comments only strengthen that argument.

Filed under: Venture Capital

Has AIM taken NASDAQ’s crown?

John Polden of MTI Partners asks this question in the latest edition of Real Deals.

The comments are the result of a study conducted by London Business School and MTI Partners: AIM- Friend or Foe. A few highlights indicate that if AIM hasn’t taken NASDAQ’s crown, it is certainly heir to the throne:

- More than 60 early stage companies IPO yearly, more than seen on Nasdaq over the past few years

- Floating on AIM costs approximately 50% less than Nasdaq

- No market cap restrictions. The average market cap was £28m (Approx. $50m USD) for 2004.

- Lighter regulations than Sarbanes-Oxley

I’ve pointed out previously that AIM is one of several reasons why early stage investing is arguably more attractive in the UK than in the US. John’s comments only strengthen that argument.

Filed under: Venture Capital

Shure E2c Review

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Santa Claus brought me a new pair of Shure E2c earphones for my iPod this Christmas. My initial impressions:

Sound Quality

These earphones are definitely clearer than my old Sony Fontopia MDR-EX71s. There isn’t as much "boom" to the bass, but that doesn’t mean they are lacking- it’s just that the bass is tight and well reproduced. Comparing the two side by side, the Shure’s are only a subjective 10-15% better- not really a reason to upgrade if you’ve already got a pair of Sony’s, but, if you are looking to get a replacement set of earphones for the ones that come with your iPod, get these.

Build Quality

I’ve gone through two pair of Sony MDR-EX7X earphones in 2 years. The cables are very, very thin and prone to breakage. My last set just looked pitiful. I had patched them in 4 places with Scotch tape. That’s $100 spent on earphones that have broken and are in the trash. The cable on the Shures are solid. There should be no breakage with these- and hopefully these will be my last pair for a while.

Noise Isolation

They passed the in-flight test with flying colors. I had to actually take out *both* buds in order to hear the flight attendant speaking to me. No engines, no screaming kids. If they can pass this test, they’ll block out sound anywhere.

Filed under: iPod

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