3GSM WORLD CONGRESS – BARCELONA. There is only a modest interest in mobile TV, according to research by Circle Research, which was carried out on behalf of the GSM Association. Research was done in fifteen markets. In a list of “best potential” for mobile phone usage TV ranks only at an 11th place, after SMS messaging, mobile email, MMS, IMS, location based services, mobile radio and other applications.
Best potential is for those applications “that have a high level of current usage”, said David William of Circle. Mobile TV is fairly new and only used by 7% of all respondents and really only in use in Japan and Korea. Respondents require a lot of mobile TV, “It must be available all the time at all places, and Picture quality must be perfect. So it will be very difficult to live up to its expectations if it is not to go the way of other applications such as WAP.”
What do people want to see on their mobile? News comes first, followed (in that order) by weather, comedy, documentaries, sports, music, programmes made especially for mobile, extra features, games, and quizzes. “But preference vary greatly country by country,” according ton William, “For instance people in India have comedy at the number spot, but Germans and Brits the weather.” People living in the Czech Republic and Malaysia mostly appreciate adult content.
What is the best business model for mobile TV? People across two continents (Europe, Asia) agree that it should be advertising funded with 58% and 57% of all respondents saying it should be free to view. In North America 54% of the people prefer paying for advertising free content, obviously because there are already immersed by advertising on heir regular TV screens.
Of the people who said they are willing to pay most people prefer to pay a fixed monthly subscription fee: 61% in Europe, 71% in Asia and 74% in North America. The others prefer the pay-per-view option. Again, here are some regional differences: remarkably Germans prefer pay-per-view to a subscription fee.