Juniper Research releaseda report recently predicting growth in streaming mobile televisionservices, to the tune of 180 million subscribers by 2013. Earlier this year, ABIResearch reported total market revenues for mobile TV will exceed $20billion by 2015.
So why is excitement around mobile TV reaching the raptureof that one Miami Heat fan after The Decision? For one, devices are gettingbetter. I used to have a Motorola Razr, which was really cool back in the day.All the girls at school wanted to use it. Today, it has the same cool factor asthe phone Zach Morris used to order a pizza in detention.
Mainstream smartphones hitting the market – think Android,iPhone and soon, WinMo 7devices – are like mini TVs, with screen sizes and resolution optimized forvideo, giving consumers a much richer experience.
Further, 4G, HSPA +, LTE, and the rest of the alphabet soupdescribing next gen wireless networkswill have a positive impact on video viewing. Better networks mean fasterstreaming, which means the highest possible quality video experience – not likethe 3 frame/second slow-modunk from Nintendo’s Double Dribble.
And the content available today is a far cry from where itwas even three years ago. MobiTV, an Airfoilclient and the largest mobile media provider in the industry, just finishedstreaming more than 100 million minutes of World Cup action to its base of morethan 10 million subscribers. They’re also powering the NFL experience on Verizon,and offer nearly every popular show you can think of on demand. What thisbasically means is there’s a lot of cool stuff you can watch on your phone.
So what’s next?
Beyond content, mobile media delivery must continue toevolve. This means exploring hybrid delivery services over wireless andbroadcast networks, offering consumers premium and free local content. Thiswould allow viewers to catch up on Mad Men while staying up to speed on localnews, weather and sports.
Further, interactivity technology, social networkingcapabilities and the ability to store content for offline playback will allinfluence the mobile media experience. MobiTV’s DRM technology and interactiveapplications are examples of where things are heading.
Also, robots will be involved. If history and action moviestell us anything, it’s that robots will one day come to power and rule overhumans. That won’t be forawhile, though.
—Andy Kill (who really likes robots)