AT&T targets mobile TV launch for May - Mobile World Live

AT&T targets mobile TV launch for May

05 NOV 2009

Using technology developed by Qualcomm, AT&T is preparing to launch mobile TV services in May having originally said it expected to offer the service by the end of 2007. Responding to this delay, Mark Siegel of AT&T said the company had waited until May to offer the service as it was a brand new offering on an entirely new network, and two new devices. The company said that it would be using Qualcomm’s MediaFlo and handsets from LG and Samsung to offer subscribers a range of TV channels, including two exclusive channels which it failed to name.
However, while AT&T will be about 12 months after Verizon Wireless in launching a mobile TV service using MediaFlo, some analysts remain unenthusiastic about the near-term success of mobile TV. “There’s still a question whether consumers are ready to watch a significant amount of TV on their handsets.” said Stanford Group analyst Michael Nelson.

Undeterred by this viewpoint, Gina Lombardi, head of MediaFlo US, told Reuters by the time AT&T offers its service in May it will be available in about 55 markets in the US, covering a potential 130 million customers. MediaFlo markets currently include Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Dallas, Orlando and Philadelphia.

Lombardi said she was happy with the number of people using the service and the amount of time they were watching it, but declined to give subscriber numbers. Subscriber growth should improve as MediaFlo improves coverage in markets such as New York, and also as AT&T starts offering its service and both carriers sell a bigger choice of phones that support the service, she added.


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