Wurlitzer One More Time Special Edition
Wurlitzer
The Wurlitzer One More Time Special Edition plays music from an integrated iPod docking station, as well as up 100 CDs you were presumably too lazy to rip.
By Brian Tracey Business Editor
msnbc.com
updated 1/6/2006 12:26:02 AM ET 2006-01-06T05:26:02
COMMENTARY

With the Consumer Electronics Show opening this week, we've been eagerly anticipating all the media coverage of the latest futuristic gadgets designed to better entertain and enlighten us. And while most consumer electronics makers want to go boldly where no gizmo has gone before, one company has taken a more "back to the future" stance with its retro-style music jukebox that works with your iPod.

Wurlitzer Jukebox and Vending, Inc. unveiled this week the Wurlitzer One More Time  Special Edition for iPod CD Jukebox with a integrated iPod docking station. Wurlitzer says the updated platter-flipper is the descendent of Wurlitzer's "Model 1015" jukebox made popular in the post-war 1940s. With its "soothing rotating color tubes, mesmerizing bubble tubes and a visible play mechanism" the 1015 "quickly became the focal point in coffee shops and diners across the nation," Wurlitzer Jukebox says.

And now it can be the focal point of your next rave party — if you can afford it. Wurlitzer Jukebox general manager Doug Skor admits the $9,500 price tag "targets a narrow consumer segment, but our research indicates that there is a market for the ultimate iPod accessory."

But when something costs more than 40 times more than the device it works with and weighs in at 346 pounds, we think Wurlitzer needs to find a better description than "accessory."

Not-so-bad ideas

  • For sale: One albino snake. Has two heads. Yours for only $150,000.

TWO-HEADED SNAKE
James A. Finley  /  AP
Leonard Sonnenschein, president of the World Aquarium in St. Louis, holds We, a two-headed albino rat snake, earlier this month. And for $150,000 you can find out for yourself if two snake heads are better than one.
The World Aquarium in St. Louis has been home to We, a one-of-a-kind two-headed albino rat snake, since 1999. President Leonard Sonnenschein has decided to sell the reptile to raise money for the aquarium, and bidding on reptileauction.com is expected close next week.

The 6 1/2-year-old snake came to the aquarium's attention when its previous owner distributed a circular offering it for sale days after its birth. The aquarium paid $15,000 knowing most two-headed snakes don't live more than a few months.

But We has survived and thrived. An inch thick and 4 feet long, she is a healthy size for a rat snake. Her body is white, but the heads have a reddish appearance.

We has survived because, unlike some two-headed animals, both mouths are connected to the same stomach, Sonnenschein said.

"It's an amazing snake," Sonnenschein said. "When people see it they are awe-struck."

Apparently not awe-struck enough to overcome their serpentine sticker-shock. At last check, the number bids to buy We totaled ... zero.

  • Marketers are always looking new ways extend their brands with unusual promotions and partnerships, but Dunkin' Donuts has taken it to another level with its announcement that its iced coffee drink has become the "official pick-me-up beverage" to the U.S. Ski Team and U.S. Snowboarding.

As part of the deal, world champion snowboarder Lindsey Jacobellis will be the spokesperson for the program that will launch this month offering ski-area discounts for purchasers of the frosty concoction.

"Dunkin' Donuts iced coffee provides a great pick-me-up any time of day, any time of year," said John Gilbert, Dunkin' Donuts vice president of marketing. So next time you are sitting on a ski lift in subzero temperatures, think iced coffee!

Furthermore, we see endless opportunities for this type of counterintuitive marketing — the makers of Swiss Miss hot cocoa could form an alliance with the pro beach volleyball tour!

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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