Radio & Television News Association

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Radio:Time to start thinking about mobile multimedia

Radio and Mobile MultiMedia
by Tom Vernon
Radio World Online

As radio broadcasters become content providers for mobile devices, the need to think in terms of multimedia, rather than just audio, becomes increasingly important.

While the tiny display on most mobile phones might discourage long-duration viewing, wireless operators are anticipating a demand for material about breaking news and sports, as well as music videos. This demand is expected to escalate as more video-enabled handsets become available. Some analysts expect mobile to be the seventh mass medium after print, recordings, cinema, a radio, TV and the Internet.

The rollout of mobile video is expected to take place in two phases, Gerry Purdy, principal analyst for MobileTrax, said.

"First-generation video technology will entail narrowcasting, where a subscriber downloads content from the carrier's server. The fee structure is pay-per-download. Users are not able to store material for later playback." Verizon's V-Cast network uses this model.

Purdy said the second-generation video will be streaming in a one-to-many model, much like today's broadcasting. Initial offerings will be streaming only, after digital rights management issues are worked out, users will be able to record streams.

(Read the rest of the article here.)


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