Feeds

AT&T goes with the FLO for mobile TV

Service goes live this Sunday

High performance access to file storage

AT&T is to launch its mobile broadcast TV service this Sunday, with a couple of new handsets to receive it and coverage in 58 markets including all the usual suspects.

The service will be much like Verizon's V Cast Mobile TV service, not least because both are using Qualcomm's MediaFLO service to deliver broadcast video to handsets without touching the cellular infrastructure.

Broadcasting video is great as long as everyone wants to watch the same thing at the same time, which explains AT&T's focus on News channels - they'll be providing both NBC News and CNN Mobile. It's harder to understand the provision of Sony Pictures movie channel PIX, as it's still difficult to imagine anyone sitting down to watch a film on a mobile phone, especially without access to a "pause" button.

AT&T is going to be charging punters $15 a month for access to ten channels - PC Magazine has a detailed breakdown of the content, and a comparison with Verizon's equivalent.

The handsets, which will also be launched on Sunday, are the LG View and Samsung Access, though the company claims lots more handsets will be available soon - but that's what they always say, and the reality will depend on how popular the service proves to be.

Qualcomm is pouring money into MediaFLO; it licensed the frequencies, provides the servers, and owns the IPR. It's a long-term investment that could reap huge rewards, and not much more than Nokia have been doing with DVB-H, for identical reasons.

Part of the problem is that launching a handset without a service makes little sense, but launching a service without handsets already in the market means AT&T is going to struggle to find viewers for a while at least. Nokia is addressing this by sticking DVB-H into its latest high-end handsets in the hope that a launched service will be on a frequency those handsets can receive. Qualcomm doesn't have that luxury, so is instead buying up spectrum and infrastructure to offer operators in exchange for handset subsidies.

In the UK Qualcomm is one of the L-Band bidders, and has made it clear that if they get some spectrum they'll be calling up local partners to see who wants to go with the FLO on this side of the pond. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
A black box for your SUITCASE: Now your lost luggage can phone home – quite literally
Breakfast in London, lunch in NYC, and your clothes in Peru
Broadband Secretary of SHEEP sensationally quits Cabinet
Maria Miller finally resigns over expenses row
Skype pimps pro-level broadcast service
Playing Cat and Mouse with the media
Beat it, freetards! Dyn to shut down no-cost dynamic DNS next month
... but don't worry, charter members, you're still in 'for life'
Like Google, Comcast might roll its own mobile voice network
Says anything's possible if regulators approve merger with Time Warner
EE dismisses DATA-BURNING glitch with Orange Mail app
Bug quietly slurps PAYG credit - yet EE denies it exists
Turnbull leaves Australia's broadband blackspots in the dark
New Statement of Expectations to NBN Co offers get-out clauses for blackspot builds
Facebook claims 100 MEEELLION active users in India
Who needs China when you've got the next billion in your sights?
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.