Vodafone looks to Sky for mobile TV

The small screen...on an even smaller screen

Vodafone's 3G punters will be able to tune in to Sky TV on their mobile handsets from tomorrow following a deal between the two giant players.

Sky Mobile TV - which includes news, sport and entertainment programmes - gives Vodafone's 250,000 3G punters access to TV on the move.

The service is free until the end of January with a total of 19 mobile channels on offer including Sky One, Discovery, MTV, History Channel and Biography Channel. Some channels will be broadcast "as live" while others will be dedicated "made for mobile" channels featuring regularly updated blocks of programming.

From February, punters will have to cough up £5 a month to watch the TV service.

Said Vodafone UK marketing guru Tim Yates: "This is not a trial on a very limited number of phones or a service available on a single make of mobile, but something that all our Vodafone live! with 3G customers can experience.

"We currently have over 250,000 3G subscribers in the country and 72 per cent 3G population coverage across the UK. Mobile TV will be a mainstream service."

In September O2 enlisted the help of 400 punters in Oxford to test whether there's a market for mobile TV.

The mobile operator - which has agreed to be gobbled up by Spain's Telefonica - teamed up with Arqiva (previously known as NTL Broadcast) and Nokia to test the "UK's first trial of full multi-channel mobile TV".

On offer are 16 channels including content from the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Five, Cartoon Network and Sky News, among others. ®

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