Monthly Archives: July 2009

Who said the Telcos did not know about Media?

The Chart of the day of  The Business Insider a few days ago is self-explanatory. Bundling very high speed Internet Access with TV is winning the battle. Will they be able to sustain it against the coming Hulu’s? This can also signal that Internet access is now perceived at home as more important than TV, and that gives an edge in the buying decision in favour of Telcos.

cablevsiptvchart0907

In CommunicAsia 2009: Making Mobile TV Work

communicasia2009

It is more than one motnh ago that I was in CommunicAsia  for a Mobile TV panel. Here are the main points we discussed about how to make the business case for Mobile TV work.

  • Free-to-Air channels are a must to drive adoption of Mobile TV into the mainstream, as Japan One Seg, Korea T-DMB and even the DVB-H Italian case show. More than 20 million Japanese watch TV on a phone. As of today, 85 % of the new handsets sold in Japan have a One Seg tuner. Even the iPhone has an One Seg tuner accesory (see picture)
  • “Free” creates a large audience that can be monetized through subscriptions, advertisement and transactions (VOD, Catch-up TV, cross-selling). It is the economics of free, common in Internet and Software, applied to Mobile TV.
  • There is a need for a next-gen Mobile TV that puts together Broadcast and Unicast technologies. Broadcast enables FTA channels at zero marginal cost (it is the same cost to serve one customer than one million) and it is efficient for premium mass audience channels like sports channels. Meantime, Unicast provides unlimited number of channels for premium, niche/long tail, VOD and catch-up TV that can be monetize as subscriptions or pay-per-download. The 3G network also enables interactive services, like EPGs, audience monitoring, interactive ads, or interactions with social network (see what my friend watch, or “watch and chat”), that give extra chance for monetization.
  • Focus on high-end devices, like iPhone or ones with TV tuners. Early adopters of these devices are the same early adopters that will watch TV on a mobile. It is a waste to support a large number of mid-range or low-end devices. Mobile TV has not crossed the chasm yet.

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Some other curious facts and learning from the Japanese One Seg: Mobile TV experience:

NHK Study: Where people watch mobile TV?
1) At home in a room wo TV 38%, 2) At work/school 26%, 3)While bathing 24% – On train goes in 7th place (17%) tied with at home in a room with a TV!
=>  There are more use cases than just watching TV on the train…

DIMSDRIVE research for Japan:
What people like about Mobile TV: 1) Anywhere, 2) free, 3) simple
What they do not like: 1) Battery, 2) don’t need to watch TV outside, 3) do not want to watch TV on a phone

Back from holiday… and to the Moon

kindle-beach

It has been almost a month of holidays in Spain with my family. It has been the month where Google has announced its Chrome OS, attacking Microsoft where it really hurts, on its Windows licenses. Microsoft success with its new search engine, Bing, reinforced with the Yahoo deal, has finally triggered Google to strike with a move that could take Linux mainstream into the desktop at last, as we dreamed and begged before.

Although rather than desktop , we should say laptop… How much more life do you think desktops have before being totally displaced by laptops? True, that desktops might evolve into Media Centers or PC2TVs in the living-room, but today’s families start to have one laptop per family member rather than one desktop per family.

This summer break was the first time we were travelling with two laptops, one for me and one for my wife. And it is also the first time that mobile operators (Telefonica, Vodafone, Orange and Yoigo) all offered wireless broadband with a HSDPA USD-modem on a prepaid basis, targeting the large number of tourists that visit Spain in summer.

This was also the first holidays that I did not carry any book, I mean, any paper book. With the Kindle fully loaded with eBooks I also avoided the tough decisions of what book to take on the plane, or which one to the beach; I always had all of them with me.

I love the Kindle experience when reading books, but surprisingly I found the eBook readers for the iPhone (eReader or Stanza) very convenient when you are really on the go. In fact, I ended up taking only the iPhone to the beach and not the Kindle. Another great use case for the iPhone eBook readers is to read in bed when your wife is sleeping and you do not want to disturb her with the lamp lights on, or with the Kindle “next page” button clicks. The iPhone is totally silent to turn pages, and with the background color in the reader turned to black, the back-light will not bother your sleeping partner either.

This was also the summer of the 40th anniversary of the first man on the Moon, and I have really enjoyed the way Google celebrated it, making the Moon available on Google Earth. Absolutely stunning. If you have not tried yet, go for it and take your own tour to the Moon (see more on the clip below).