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1. Video Games
50 Million Units—What console has sold 50 million units? Hint: It’s a gaming console for the non-gamer. Nintendo had it right when they started their grassroots marketing campaign–for the Wii–with the most unlikely gaming consumer: soccer moms, dads, grandmas and blue-collars. It’s not that the non-gaming audience didn’t like gaming; the right console just wasn’t available. Now, Microsoft is taking a page from the Nintendo playbook… A play that scores 50 million units is one worth keeping.
10%-50% Cut—Big name actors are feeling the viewership squeeze in their paychecks… to the tune of 10%-50%. Or, the superstars are getting the boot and replaced by cheaper talent (ie b-name actors). Salary cuts are among the many strategies TV networks are implementing to supplement revenue declines. Networks are shooting in low-tax locations, cutting out the middle man and going digital (in lieu of 35-millimeter film).
$1, 1GB—Time Warner Cable (TWC), to much criticism, is beginning its tier-based bandwidth allocation system, using mid-sized cities with little competition as their testing grounds. Among the guinea pigs are Austin and San Antonio, TX, and Greensboro, NC –pulling Rochester, NY out of the plan due to mounting pressure from the public. TWC’s tier-based system offers 5 gigabytes (GB), 10GB and 40GB plans ranging from $22.95 to $54.95 a month and $1 per GB if you exceed the allotted bandwidth. According to BusinessWeek, the top-tier plan of 40GB, with 7.25 hours of video streaming could be charged up to $200 a month. Considering the average TV usage is 60 hours a week, this strategy might get pricey.
16,000 jobs—It’s no secret that newspapers are making headlines. With declining readership, newspapers are finding ways to stay afloat, even if that means making deep job cuts… 16,000 reporters in last year alone. Some of the heavyweights are opting for job-cuts or being forced into bankruptcy. The 150-year old paper, Rocky Mountain News folded, and many papers are transitioning to a digital-only publication in an attempt to keep their heads above water.
6.67 Million New Users—Fact: China is a hotbed for all products. Its burgeoning economy offers a great opportunity for product and service providers to capitalize on first-market advantage and tremendous growth in consumer spending. Mobile phones are no different. But something surprising happened in the Janurary 2009. Mobile phone growth slowed from 7.07 million new users in December 2009 to 6.67 million users in January 2009. Is China echoing the global spending trends? According to the United Overseas Bank, China’s decline in mobile growth can be attributed to the declining global markets.