BT to roll out commercial mobile TV service after positive pilot results
LONDON - People would pay as much as £8 a month to have television on their mobile phones, according to research by BT.
The findings have prompted the telecoms giant to confirm the commercial launch of the digital TV to mobile service, known as BT Movio, later this year.
It will be the first wholesale service of its kind, allowing the mobile phone networks to offer their customers a digital television and radio service.
BT partnered with Virgin Mobile for the four-month pilot, which found that two thirds of customers would be prepared to pay up to £8 a month to receive TV on their mobiles. The majority of users said they would consider upgrading their handset to one that supports the service, and 38% said they were prepared to switch networks so they could receive it.
Over three quarters of the pilot users tuned into digital TV and radio on their mobile on a weekly basis or more often, with the average length of TV viewing being more than one hour a week. A large proportion of pilot users stated that they want up to five types of mobile TV channels, including a combination of news, sport, comedy, sitcoms and music.
Digital radio also proved popular, with pilot users tuning in on average for over one-and-a-half hours every week.
Unlike other mobile TV services, BT Movio's uses the Digital Audio Broadcasting service, meaning multiple users can access services at the same time without a reduction in quality.
Emma Lloyd, managing director of BT Movio, said: "It is clear from the very positive feedback we have had from the pilot that BT Movio will be in high demand from mobile users and operators alike.
"We are in commercial discussions with mobile operators about launching a consumer service after the launch of the wholesale service later this year."
O2 is due to unveil results of a separate mobile television trial next week.
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