TV in your phone – IPhone vs DTV

Digital TV in your cell phone is an added value when TV goes from analog to digital broadcasts. The EUs Commissioner for Information for society and media, Viviane Reding, wants the countries in Europe to agree upon one standard for TV in handsets. Probably DVB-H will be the chosen one. But what will the consumer get with DVB-H? And when will someone start talking about digital TV in cellphones here in the United States? It is still very quiet in media about the transition itself and its impact.

I have seen and tried to watch digital TV on a mobile phone – it works great. However being in the US and experience the hype around the newly released IPhone and its capabilities I wonder what the consumer will choose. I come to think about the difference between the quality of video / TV on Iphone and on an ordinary cell phone. I say ordinary because the IPhone is more than a phone. The pictures clarity, how fast it uploaded the clips from YouTube and how easy it was to handle the menus – I think the IPhone will be a real challenger for TV broadcasted to cell phones.

For the consumer little matters that the transition will also carry new possibilities to develop TV as a medium. Mainstream consumers will care about their TV set and get it working with a converterbox. But along the line – tomorrows TV viewer want to see TV whenever and wherever they are. To use the mobile phone as a TV device will be as normal as a built in camera in the phone is today.

In Europe trials have been made with digital TV broadcasted to mobile phones. One thing is that people like it and they also bring the phone with them in their bed! Watching a movie, sports or news is something people do in bed.

I found the DVB-H phones that I have tried no to be very easy to use. And the broadcast was interrupted now and then – just like a TV with rabbitears.

So, if the IPhone will carry TV in an easier way and with greater quality and content. The DVB-H standard and its producers and users will get a real challenge. That is good -for the consumer.

Anders Bjers

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