(Mis)Uses of Technology

by Carlo Longino


Mobile TV is unsurprisingly a big story here at the CTIA trade show. Multiple vendors are showing off their mobile TV solutions on a variety of devices with a range of demos, and Qualcomm's MediaFLO even running live in Las Vegas. The quality is fine, and they all appear to work well, so technical issues don't appear to be a problem. What is a problem, though, is figuring out what people want to watch, if anything. Nobody really knows if mobile TV is even something in which many people are interested, or like many wireless innovations before it, the supposed public demand is really little more than hype. But before these services go online, the companies offering them really need to get a better handle on the type of television and video content mobile users want, and more importantly, will pay for. The idea of just broadcasting the usual live TV channels to a handset doesn't seem to really fit many use cases -- particularly as the idea of "live" television is one that more and more consumers are moving away from at home.

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