Even the IFPI is jumping on the ‘mobiles will compete with iPods’ bandwagon with a prediction that 3G will drive the music downloads on mobile phones. “Everyone has a phone. Anytime from this year mobile [music downloads] could be bigger than online,” the IFPI’s market research director Keith Jopling said.

Sadly, what he’s missed is the fact that only industry bodies and research companies believe this, consumers have shown in surveys that music ranks well down the list of mobile features they look for. Add to that the fact that people don’t value their mobile phone anywhere near as much as their digital audio players, changing them for free every year or so and then you have format/storage/transfer issues! When you’re talking about a poorly designed, overly expensive and incompatible service, I find it hard to understand why they (industry/researchers) persist. Is it a case of if you say something often and loudly enough it’ll come true?

The politics and business hurdles alone could scupper mobile music development and when you add lack of brand recognition, the pricing and technology issues, it’s hard to believe that the man and women in the street will be even vaguely interested.