TMCnet Feature
January 04, 2012

MetroPCS, Mobile Content Venture to Launch Mobile TV Service

By Gary Kim, Contributing Editor

MetroPCS Communications and the Mobile Content Venture (MCV) are partnering to provide MetroPCS customers live, local broadcast television on their mobile phones later in 2012.

MetroPCS will be the first wireless service provider to offer “Dyle Mobile TV” to consumers on devices that are pre-loaded with the Dyle application, enabling customers to watch live TV right out of the box. Samsung Telecommunications America (Samsung Mobile) will provide the first smartphone with Dyle, a premium Android (News - Alert) device, using ATSC-Mobile technology, MCV says.Mobile TV



Separately, Vodafone (News - Alert) Hutchison Australia has launched a live TV service for mobile phone users, including both broadcast and subscription channels. VHA quietly launched its live TV service in October 2011 and offers iPhone customers five channels, including Fox Sports News, CNN, Sky News 24, Cartoon Network, live cricket television and SBS.

VHA charges $1 a day, or $4 a month, per channel for unlimited viewing. SBS is available for free. $4 a month or $1 a day

Customers can already watch SBS television and some ABC channels on a short delay, and the Vodafone Hutchison Australia is considering adding more channels.Vodafone Hutchison Australia mobile TV

Dyle Mobile TV is the consumer-facing brand launched by MCV that will deliver live mobile television content from 15 major broadcast groups including Pearl LLC (Belo Corp., Cox Media Group, E.W. Scripps Co., Gannett Broadcasting, Hearst Television Inc., Media General Inc., Meredith Corp., Post-Newsweek Stations Inc. and Raycom (News - Alert) Media) as well as FOX, ION Television, Bahakel, Univision, Telemundo and NBC. At launch, MCV expects to offer the mobile video service on more than 72 stations in 32 markets covering more than 50 percent of the U.S. population.

The deal marks a notable advance for broadcaster's efforts to launch mobile DTV services. In the past, stations had been unable conclude deals with mobile service providers, who seemed reluctant to create a potential competitor for the delivery of video to phones and mobile devices. Mobile Broadcast TV

At the end of the third quarter of 2011, MetroPCS has about 9.1 million subscribers and is the fifth largest wireless carrier in the country.

As part of the deal, the service will be preloaded as an app on the Samsung (News - Alert) phones and available in such MetroPCS markets as Atlanta, Boston, Dallas-Fort Worth, Detroit, Jacksonville, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Orlando, Philadelphia, Sacramento, San Francisco and Tampa.

The companies aren't revealing the consumer fees for the service, if any, pricing for the Samsung phone, or exact timing for the 2012 launch. Content will vary by market, but in Los Angeles would include Fox, NBC, Ion, Ion Qubo, Telemundo and Univision, according to Erik Moreno, co-general manager of MCV and senior vice president of corporate development at the Fox Networks Group.

How much consumers are willing to pay, for what types of content, remains an important issue. How pricing might change in response to user demand might be an issue in the future as well, given the bandwidth intensity of video services.

 


Gary Kim (News - Alert) is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Gary’s articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Rich Steeves
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