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Motorola delayed iTunes phone over Apple concerns

Motorola delayed iTunes phone over Apple concerns

NEW ORLEANS - Apple Computer Inc.'s concerns over an early unveiling of Motorola Inc.'s new iTunes phone prompted the Schaumburg company to delay the product's announcement, Chief Executive Ed Zander said this week.

Motorola was set to unveil the phone last week but the announcement was scrapped at the last minute after talks with "our operators" and discussions about the "logistics of this product with our carriers," a Motorola spokeswoman said at the time.

The highly anticipated phone will allow users to download music from Apple's popular iTunes Internet music store.

At a briefing during a wireless industry trade show in New Orleans Tuesday, Zander said that Apple CEO Steve Jobs didn't want the phone to be unveiled now because it's not expected to actually hit the market until summer.

Apple typically announces new products right before consumers can buy them, Zander said. Cell phones, on the other hand, are typically unveiled months before they hit the market, often at big industry trade shows.

"We were doing (the announcement) the old way," Zander said.

The announcement of the first iTunes phone was to coincide with a big consumer electronics show in Germany last week, which is being followed by the wireless industry's annual U.S. show this week.

Motorola's venture with Apple has gotten a lot of buzz because of the huge popularity of Apple's iPod music player and the iTunes Web site.

- Gazette news services

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