Motorola made headlines Monday with a spate of new products that even included a pair of sunglasses with a built-in phone. Conspicuously absent, however, was perhaps the most anticipated debut of all: the long-promised iTunes phone announced with Apple Computer exactly a year ago.

So what's the hold-up? On its face, an iTunes phone seems like a slam-dunk idea, given the stratospheric success of its iPod progenitor. Apple has already taken care of the music and marketing; presumably, all Motorola would need to do is design a phone that can handle direct downloads or storage cards used to transfer music from the computer.

One reason for the delay could be the missing third leg of the necessary triangle, the carrier. Verizon, Sprint and other Motorola partners are planning their own digital music services, which would allow subscribers to download music directly to their phones over new broadband wireless networks.>>>>snip