Dominating Mobile Video

Stephen Yagielowicz

The world of mobile video today is in a constant state of flux, as a variety of hard-hitting power players seek to become the end-all of personal video including perennial telecommunications giant AT&T, which is set to launch its branded mobile video service.

With the closure of Qualcomm’s much ballyhooed FLO TV service opening the way, AT&T will reportedly shutter its existing branded Mobile TV service, which powered the FLO-enabled devices. In its place, AT&T will offer its own branded service, providing its mobile video technology to users of the new MobiTV.

... the real problems at this point appear to be legal, rather than technological with licensing and intellectual property issues hampering deployment efforts.

According to the company, MobiTV currently offers dozens of different channels, providing hundreds of shows; including live sports, breaking news and full episodes that are available to download and save. The service is priced at $9.99 per month, but because MobiTV uses data MobiTV uses data rather than voice minutes, AT&T advises subscribers to utilize eligible data plans in order to avoid additional charges.

Qualcomm reportedly received nearly $2 billion last year from AT&T in exchange for the 700 MHz spectrum that once powered FLO TV and will now be used for AT&T’s new broadcast TV service and LTE network. Qualcomm is set to cease FLO TV program delivery early this year.

AT&T plans to continue reselling MobiTV’s streaming video service while preparing for the launch of its own branded service later this year. These offerings are slated to be deployed alongside the company’s U-verse Mobile service, which is compatible with four mobile operating systems, including Android.

While the development of advanced mobile video technology is a positive move for both consumers as well as the adult content publishers who will indirectly benefit, the real problems at this point appear to be legal, rather than technological with licensing and intellectual property issues hampering deployment efforts.

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