Piece by piece, News Corp.
You may recognize Jamba as the company behind the infectious Crazy Frog animated ringtone -- the one that was so popular that it even bumped Coldplay off the top of the United Kingdom music charts one week.
The mobile market is huge. It can transform business models, as it has with InfoSpace
News Corp. is no stranger to the power of the cellular phone. It has watched over the American Idol cash cow at Fox, where music fans text-message their votes to keep their favorite performers crooning for another week.
Jamba will grant News Corp. the technological platform and depth of global distribution to do some pretty neat things. This morning's release promised mobile offerings tied to its long-running hit series The Simpsons. Paying subscribers will be able to access exclusive mobile content that may find Homer Simpson saying "Doh!" while making News Corp. a whole lot of dough.
The one aspect of the Jamba deal that truly intrigues me is how News Corp. will incorporate it into its MySpace gorilla. Music has become a major part of the MySpace story, with signed and unsigned artists flocking to set up band pages in a move to appeal to the service's 74 million global users. Last week, MySpace announced that it is teaming up with SNOCAP to allow select artists to sell digital downloads through its highly trafficked site.
It probably won't be long before that same initiative has the site selling popular ringtones and mobile content to its users. Then it would likely open up the playing field to let unsigned artists market their own ringtones to fans, friends, and family members.
Critics who wondered whether the wild ways of MySpace could be effectively monetized are starting to see it all come together now. Google
Openwave is a Rule Breakers newsletter service recommendation.
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz knows that you can't ignore sleeping giants, much less the ones that are wide awake -- like MySpace. He does not own shares in any of the companies in this story. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.