How do you pass the time in airports and taxicabs? How about watching TV-on your cell phone?
Sprint's PCS Vision data network has become the first to carry the live TV news and special interest broadcasts of MobiTV (www.mobitv.com), a global TV network from Berkeley, California-based Idetic. For a surprisingly low $10 per month billed against a $15 monthly Sprint premium fee, you can catch news and market reports on ABC, MSNBC, CNBC or CNET; or diverting documentaries on The Learning Channel and Discovery Channel. There are also sports and music stations-even kiddie stations like ToonWorld, which attract a surprisingly mature demographic, according to Idetic CEO Phillip Alvelda.
You'll need one of a dozen color phones supporting Java or BREW applications, like Sanyo's 8100 or Samsung's VGA1000. Audio and video streams won't synchronize any better than those video phones used at war fronts, but they are live streams-as opposed to prerecorded file downloads-and affect battery life very little.
MobiTV broadcasts will improve significantly as network bandwidth and phone processors do, promises Alvelda. He's intent on bringing this and other video applications to all the world's 1.2 billion cell phones.