Mobile DTV provides an open pathway for what consumers want; delivering information, communication and now, TV entertainment to more consumers, in more places, at more times, and with more control.
Mobile DTV is in its initial launch phase in Europe, Asia, and the U.S. Mobile DTV refers to programmed, scheduled network television delivered on powerful, local digital broadcast spectrum. The power of such digital broadcast is evident in market dynamics worldwide.
Categorically, mobile DTV is different from mobile video. Mobile video is not mobile television, but rather a broadly defined product category of any sort of video delivered to mobile devices. Mobile DTV brings traditional programmed, scheduled, local and network content to mobile devices, and allows consumers (i.e., in Japan, Korea and Italy) to respond with real TV viewing on mobile devices. Ironically to some and predictably to others, there is strong, confirming evidence from market research, actual trials and commercial launches that traditional, broadcast and network TV content will drive mass adoption of portable video capability.
Local news and sports, together with highly promoted and branded network content, will be fundamental to the mass appeal and adoption of mobile TV; just as they have historically, and without exception, been for every major advance in television over the past half century – cable, VOD, DVR, and now mobile TV. Similar to the history and development of cable TV content and services, the mass appeal and adoption of mobile DTV will provide the base upon which to successfully launch add-on premium, enhanced and interactive services.
Mobile TV expands opportunities, and is a unique method to reach consumers with content and with messages, such as instant and localized public safety, disaster and weather alerts. Consumer interest in such service and information has already been demonstrated in international trials of the technology.
New market research conducted by Magid Media Labs indicated U.S. mobile consumers say they are ready for live, local Mobile DTV, with the concept of watching live digital television via a mobile device appealing to half of those surveyed. When asked what live video they want to see, nearly nine out of ten survey respondents say they are interested in watching live news and weather programming while on-the-go.
According to the national survey of 1,000 adults, local news and information content will drive live Mobile DTV, with 88% of respondents expressing interest in watching this content on mobile devices including laptops, netbooks, cellular handsets, smartphones, and other devices. The appeal is particularly high among young adult Millennials (ages 18-29), who will be among the early Mobile DTV adopters. These Millenial respondents find Mobile DTV appealing generally, and their interest in mobile local news is double their current daily viewership on conventional TV sets.
Furthermore, survey research data, as well as hard data from actual consumer trials (Horowitz Associates, McKinsey, comScore, SES-Americom, documented cases in Korea and Italy), indicate that consumers relate to a full-channel simulcast of TV signals much more readily than customized or menu-driven short-form content. The power of local, digital broadcast spectrum to deliver TV content will transform the category from video snacking to TV viewing."
U.S. and international trial data clearly show that mobile DTV extends the broadcast viewing day to include morning and evening rush, and midday; thus being additive to current TV viewership. The data reveal robust and frequent usage and viewership among both men and women, particularly younger men and women. Mobile DTV plays right to the needs of young people as they quickly form new habits around technology that brings content to all places and times they can access it. Mobile DTV immediately makes local and network TV content accessible, hence relevant, to young people and to new lifestyle and entertainment habits."
The challenge for mobile TV is to gain access to viewing audiences. Structural roadblocks have hampered consumer adoption and usage of new technologies, as well as consumer ability to enjoy the free flow of content and advertising between traditional and new media platforms. Beyond demonstrated consumer demand, the business and regulatory dynamics among the broadcasters, manufacturing/technology companies and regulatory agencies will be key to success.
March 2010 | Download (pdf)
"Mobile TV is and will be different than mobile video…consumers relate to a full-channel simulcast of TV signals much more readily than customized or menu-driven short-form content."
Howard Horowitz President Horowitz Associates, Inc. Market Research and Consulting
Time and time again Mobile DTV has proven to have a successful track record in the global market. Broadcasters in other countries have implemented different business models which reveal the enormous opportunity no matter which choice a broadcaster makes.