Siano Goes Big in Brazil

Mobile TV chip maker Siano Mobile Silicon has revealed that three Brazilian mobile operators – Vivo, Claro and TIM Brazil – are promoting products using its MDTV (Mobile Digital TV) receivers. Siano is powering mobile phones and 3G modem cards equipped with digital TV for mobile subscribers in Brazil, in partnership with Chinese firm ZTE. The Siano-powered terminals enable viewing of dozens of channels comprised of sports, news and entertainment, culminating with the FIFA World Cup in 2010, beginning in June.

“We want Brazilians to fully experience the World Cup and be able to watch the games anywhere and anytime,” Hugo Janeba, Executive VP of Marketing and Innovation in Vivo, the largest mobile operator in Brazil, said publically last week. “And when soccer fans have their own pocket TV, the experience certainly becomes much more complete.”

The new data terminals were designed by ZTE and are based on Siano’s multi-standard receiver chip, which supports the Brazilian ISDB-T DTV format. The 3G data-cards are compatible with all standard notebooks, netbooks, and desktop PCs.

Brazil is leading the roll-out of mobile digital TV services in South America, with MDTV services having recently debuted also in Argentina and Chile. Other countries likely to join include Uruguay, Peru, Venezuela, Bolivia and Paraguay – who are expected to launch ISDB-T services within the next fifteen months. If they do, this will generate one of the largest unified Mobile DTV markets worldwide, totalling more than 300 million potential viewers.

“Sports broadcasting and the evolution of Mobile TV go hand-in-hand,” says Dr. Windsor Holden, Principal Analyst at Juniper Research. “Given the football-mad Brazilians and the World Cup in 2010, and with Brazil also hosting the 2016 Olympic Games, there’s fertile ground for Mobile TV to really take-off.  With the help of major sporting events in the coming years, Brazil could prove the first market in S. America to make mobile TV a success.”