Tech and telecom companies around the world have been betting big on the next frontier: mobile. Today, the NYTimes reports that mobile TV is spreading in the U.S. and Europe as more and more people are watching direct broadcasts on their cellphones, and more and more companies are investing in infrastructure, devices, and programming. Japan leads the direct mobile TV audience, with 20 million cellphones equipped with TV receivers, followed by South Korea with 8.2 million.
From Kevin J. O’Brien’s NYTimes article:
“On Sunday, AT&T Wireless, with 71.4 million phone customers, started AT&T Mobile TV in the United States. The 10-channel service, costing $15 a month, includes Pix, a channel with movies from Sony Pictures. AT&T will sell cellphones made by LG Electronics and Samsung that can receive the TV broadcasts.
Britain is auctioning wireless spectrum this month that could be used for mobile TV. France plans to award a license for a 13-channel mobile video service in June. In Germany, Mobile 3.0, an investor group led by a South African-based media company, Naspers, plans to start a video service this year…”
Now wait a second. Before mobile operators do to TV or movies what the ipod did to music and video (which is shift from collective listening/viewing to individualized on-demand listening/viewing), please watch this absolute gem of a video with filmmaker David Lynch, one of the best American directors working today. (I’m not sure when this was recorded, but it’s arguably one of my most favorite finds on YouTube.)