It seems that MP4 has been facing huge pressures since it was created including the impact from video MP3 as well as market competition from intelligent cell phone and PSP. As a result, MP4 producers have to speed up the product innovation. After MP4 becomes more familiar and more acceptable to people, its product line is also enriched. There are both the popular MP4 products with lower price and also the higher-end products with more functions.
As the player market is developing fast, MP4 is also consolidating and enlarging its own market by continuous innovation. The Analysis Report of China MP4 Player Market in the First Quarter from CCID Consulting shows, the MP4 sales volume is 478.8 thousand with the total sales of 708mln Yuan; MP4 market sales volume in China is expected to be more than 2mln in 2013.
The price is still the most important factor that will influence consumers''decision. Analysys International showed its opinion in Special Report on MP4 Market Development in China (2013) that, based on research, MP4 with a price between 500 to 1000 yuan sells best, occupying about 45.23% of the total sales volume and the proportion of products with a price between 1000 to 1500 yuan is about 18.09%; sales volume falls as price rises. Judging from the whole, Flash MP4 with a relatively lower price becomes the mainstream in the market, occupying over 80% of the market shares.
In August 2010, ANCHOS presented the newly-designed G5 series MP4. The breakthrough of this new series comes from the employment of high quality flash as the storage medium, which not only expanded the product line, but significantly lowered down the always-high price of AHCNOS, so as to allow ANCHOS who always focuses on high-end market to have mid-low-end products. Regarding this, Zhang Yaling, the managing director (Asia) of France ANCHOS, said frankly that the mid-low-end market had already become the main bottleneck for ANCHOS to increase the market shares. ANCHOS will continually present products with a price lower than 1000 yuan in the second half year of 2009 with the purpose to seize consumers in mid-low-end segment markets.
Falling in price doesn''t mean falling in function. On the contrary, the intense competition in MP4 market has accelerated the innovation in the technology and the enrichment in the functions. CCID Consulting believes, based on the technological tendency, the video decoding program will still be diversified; the replacement of soft decoding by pure hard decoding will greatly promote the competitiveness of MP4 player; besides, the enhancement of the stand-by capability of its battery will also weaken the competitive threat from the entertainment terminals like cell phone. What''s more, the present development of wide screen film technology is a significant factor to be considered in the design of future MP4 players.
CCID Consulting expressed that only the technological innovation is not enough to attract consumers, it is important for MP4 to have more values and more functions. These functions must be convenient, modern and leading in the industry. On one hand, the basic function of MP4, that is video-play, needs to be further exploited; on the other hand, more functions need to be developed, including PDA, games, DC/DV, DVB-T/DMB-TH digital TV, GPS, WIFI and Bluetooth etc. These will greatly strengthen the product competitiveness.
Though MP4 market hasn''t realized "blowout", it still wins the favor from many analysis institutions. Wei Yuhuai, analyst from CCID Consulting, believes that "MP4 market prospect is very favorable. There is a development cycle time of three to five years, during which the producers will get more chances. The key is to identify the correct segment market in order to execute the difference strategy." In 2010, the integration of network and television resources has become the main representation of this strategy.
On August 21st, 2011, Zhang Haitao, the deputy director of the State Administration of Radio Film and TV (SARFT), pointed out in the special report on the International Radio Film and TV Expo Scientific and Technological Development Forum, that during the period of Beijing Olympics, mobile multimedia broadcasting service will be offered by the joint efforts of SARFT and related departments at all levels. It is learnt that now there are two ways to watch TV by hand-held terminals: one is the communication methods including 3G service and the other is mobile multimedia broadcasting. The latter adopts the wireless digital broadcasting network and offers radio and TV service to such portable terminals as cell phone, PDA, MP4 and laptop without occupying the communication channels.
From the above mentioned, the core resource of MP4 is no longer DVD film. With the fast development of Digital Multimedia Broadcasting (DMB) and WIFI, the integration of TV and network resource will become a more important tendency in the development of MP4. In ANCHOS G5 series, this tendency gets expression in ACP content portal and EPG electronic program guidance.
With ACP content portal, consumers can preset the menu icons on the product series with WIFI function, so that they can visit the content portal through WIFI by just pressing one key and purchase or rent film resources. While with the EPG electronic program guidance, as long as there are network channels, consumers can visit the website of ANCHOS through WIFI, download simulation TV electronic program guidance information and learn the program schedule of the present two weeks so as to pre-contract watching and recording and time the power-on-and-off by coordinating the DVR base. By such integration, network and TV platform have realized seamless connection. Zhang Yaling expressed, ANCHOS would present the supporting software. By downloading JAVA first, consumers can download more resources like stock market information, calendar and games etc. What''s more the establishment of such platform will further expand the application scope of MP4 and bring to people''s daily life more convenience and happiness