Promoting Wireless Video
Phone companies can adopt numerous strategies for seeding the market for mobile video. But instead of just proposing to play “Everybody Loves Raymond” over a cellular network, it makes more sense to try to create a new content community and a pool of shorter, more mobile-centric video content. But content communities don’t spring up overnight, and carriers might want to fertilize their development. Along these lines, Cingular has launched a contest for short films created with mobile phones. The contest will award prizes in two categories for the best 15 second films. A good idea for sure, but carriers should also seed the market for high-quality video shorts made high production values and full cameras, which target the mobile market. Imagine, for example, signing a deal with a top band such that their new music videos would only be released over cell phones for one week prior to being released to television. Ringtone sales, screen savers, MP3 downloads, etc. could all be associated to the mobile music video. Companies like Sony, Time Warner, and Disney own rights to mobile content, and top bands…so why is no one doing this. Probably because they’re all hopped up on the wacky assumption that plain old TV will succeed on mobile phones. Good on Cingular for trying something different.