Mobile broadcast television has the opportunity
to combine two of the most successful consumer products
in history; television and mobile telephony.
new report by independent market analyst Datamonitor,
predicts the number of mobile broadcast TV subscribers
to grow from a mere 4.4 million today to an estimated
155.6 million by the end of 2012. However, the report
Opportunities in the mobile broadcast TV market,
2006 - 2012 notes that whilst Mobile broadcast
TV is continually highlighted as the ''next big thing'',
there are also considerable hurdles that need to be
"Currently there are about 4.4 million mobile
broadcast TV subscribers globally and at that, split
just between a handful of countries. This subscriber
base will grow to 65.6 million in 2010 and more than
double to an estimated 155.6 million by 2012 - a compound
annual growth rate (CAGR) of 66.2 per cent,"
says Chris Khouri, associate media and broadcasting
analyst with Datamonitor and author of the study.
"However, consumer education, technological fragmentation
and content adaptation will have to be addressed first
before mass-adoption can take place."
Datamonitor expects the Asia-Pacific region to have
76.3 million subscribers by 2012. Europe will have
the second largest subscriber base with an estimated
42.7 million subscribers by 2012 with a CAGR of 102%
from 2006. This high growth rate is directly attributable
to the predicted pan-European push for mobile broadcast
TV between 2009 and 2012. North America, dominated
by the United States, is expected to have a subscriber
base of 35.6 million.
Mobile broadcast TV is not seen as a significant revenue
generation stream at first
Pricing models for mobile broadcast TV vary by region
with some service providers opting for a free-to-air
service. Most mobile operators, however, would be
looking to charge between the regions of $8-12 per
month for a mobile broadcast TV service. This model
is particularly dependent upon national mobile consumption
dynamics. In most Western European and North American
regions, subscription models are expected to be the
dominant business model at first. Datamonitor does
not expect mobile broadcast solutions to be a significant
revenue generator until consumers see value in adopting
The movement towards advertising models for revenue
generation for mobile broadcast TV has an unquestionably
long way to go. The catalyst for this shift is ensuring
that both a return on initial investment has been
met and that there is a large enough subscriber base
to warrant the transition. Once there is a transition,
however, Datamonitor considers that the potential
benefits of switching to advertising revenue models
will be with leveraging operational costs and reducing
costs to consumers.
Benefits and challenges for mobile broadcast TV
A primary motivation for content producers to invest
in mobile broadcast TV services is to expand audience
reach. Mobile network operators (MNOs) stand to gain
advantage by adding value to their service network.
Essentially, the goal for both players is to boost
the attractiveness of a service offering in order
to reduce churn to alternative entertainment channels.
Furthermore, there are significant opportunities for
technology vendors and systems integrators. Considering
the complexity of the ecosystem with competing technologies
and formats, there will be an increasing need for
mobile network operators (MNOs) and content producers
to ensure that their digital assets are managed and
transported efficiently and effectively.
Despite these opportunities, there are notable barriers
to mass-adoption of mobile broadcast TV services.
Content such, as advertising, will have to adapt to
the constraints of the mobile device as well as the
transforming usage habits of an ''on-the-go'' consumer.
The current fragmentation of bearer technologies (such
as DAB-IP, DMB, DVB-H or MediaFLO) will create complexities
in implementation. Datamonitor considers that interoperability
will play an increasing role for handset manufacturers
in order to expand market penetration in multiple
Consumer education is expected to be one of the biggest
barriers for mass-adoption.
most cases, consumers need to ''see it to believe it''
in order to see value in subscribing to a mobile broadcast
TV service. Strong and innovative marketing campaigns,
such as viral marketing or traveling exhibitions,
will considerably aide in the mass-adoption of mobile
broadcast TV services."