Mobile TV users continue to grow but there is still no proven business model so far
August 28, 2009
Number of mobile TV users continues to grow — No proven business model so far — Subscription-based is dominant, but free-to-air services are also offered — On-going battle on standards.
Stuttgart, Germany — According to InfoCom’s latest study release on mobile broadband services and innovative applications, the number of mobile TV users continues to grow but there is still no proven business model so far. Japan, South Korea and Italy are the leading markets for broadcast-based mobile TV services but mobile TV subscriber growth in these markets is driven mainly by free or artly-free access and rather large handset availability. In fact, ad-based free-to-air services are dominant in Japan and South Korea whereas most of all other markets are dominated by subscription based services, which range from €1.00 to €17.00 a month (for as low as 2 and as high as 60 TV channels); though, in these markets, the subscriber base is not taking up.
Third-party service providers ceased commercial operations in Japan and Germany mainly due to a non-cooperative attitude of the local mobile operators as well as a rather limited choice of both channels and handsets. Mobile operators are in general rather reluctant to collaborate with broadcasters and third-party service providers although some are beginning to open towards partnerships.
The on-going battle on standards — namely streaming over 3G against broadcasting — is actually leading to market dissemination. Currently, most mobile TV offers in Western Europe are streamed over 3G, although there is a certain shift towards broadcast standards, especially DVB-H against others, such as 1-Seg, MediaFLO, T-DMB or S-DMB. Content generally offered are news, sports and adult contents, which are particularly adapted for mobile viewing. So far the market for “made-for-mobile” content (such as mobisodes for TV shows) is rather small.
About mobile TV services:
This release about mobile TV services is extracted from “Mobile Broadband — Unwrapping the trends”. This section provides an analysis of Mobile TV services worldwide. The report shows leading markets for mobile TV and pinpoints the factors for subscriber growth. The main dealbreakers for mobile TV services are identified through an analysis of unsuccessful services. The report compares the main mobile TV standards, underline strengths and weaknesses and identifies market drivers and obstacles for mobile TV services.
InfoCom is a market research and consultancy company with over 20 years experience providing strategic analyses and planning assistance to stakeholders in the telecommunications, IT and multimedia industries. InfoCom’s independent and fact-based analyses highlight trends and opportunities, supporting decision makers to understand market dynamics in order to improve their