The problem with mobile video

I have never been convinced by mobile tv, or even mobile video, for that matter. Whilst there are some people who may use it, it’s pretty small and niche. This is primarily because the true TV experience is so much better, well established and easy to use. It is also a shared experience.

The other problem with mobile TV and video is bandwidth. Even if the demand was there, the networks simply could not cope. To deal with this, Derek McManus, CTO of O2 UK recently explained in a press release that the company was investing to cope with the growing demand for mobile data services, such as those demanded by the iphone.

He said:

“In the past 12 months the mobile industry has seen an unprecedented change in demand. The introduction of world-class devices, in combination with a wide variety of data applications, has brought about a dramatic change in customer behaviour and created an exponential demand on mobile data networks. To put this in context, watching a YouTube video on a smartphone can use the same capacity on the network as sending 500,000 text messages simultaneously.”

I’ll repeat the last line in bold:
To put this in context, watching a YouTube video on a smartphone can use the same capacity on the network as sending 500,000 text messages simultaneously

Brands, may be looking to deliver content-rich video and applications, but this could present a problem for networks. If it is to go anywhere then there needs to be the bandwidth.

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