Verizon Unveils Mobile TV Service

US mobile network operator Verizon Wireless has taken the wraps off its V CAST Mobile TV service that will allow consumers to watch many of their favourite TV programmes on the move. The company says the service should be available in the first quarter of 2007, and will be available on two new handsets, the Samsung SCH-u620 and the LG VX9400. The phones will also feature V CAST Music, V CAST Video, Mobile Web 2.0 and Get It Now capabilities. Pricing for the handsets and the service will be announced at the time of launch.
With an initial launch in many major US markets, V CAST Mobile TV will feature broadcast and cable television, with live content and other programming 24 hours a day from many of the worlds best-known entertainment brands, including CBS, Comedy Central, Fox, MTV, NBC News, NBC Entertainment and Nickelodeon, representing a variety of options for all types of TV viewers.
V CAST Mobile TV isnt just a place-holder for broadcast programming on the mobile phone it is the best of television, programmed specifically for the mobile customer with great programs, the way they were meant to be seen, on your mobile phone, says Verizon Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, John Stratton. Television has revolutionized our culture, and wireless phones have become an integral part of our everyday lives. V CAST Mobile TV represents the convergence of these two realities.
Working with its key partner, MediaFLO USA, Verizon Wireless expects to turn on the service in major US markets in the first quarter of 2007. Verizon says that since MediaFLO operates a dedicated multicast network that delivers programming in a linear format, the integration of V CAST Mobile TV with the MediaFLO USA service means it can offer customers the latest in mobile entertainment without impacting its award-winning voice services.
The new service will be accessible on new V CAST Mobile TV handsets via a dedicated V CAST Mobile TV key. The programming will be presented in time block/scheduled availability, consistent with familiar cable and satellite TV models, in both Eastern and Pacific Time zones. The initial line-up will include programming from channels including CBS, Comedy Central, FOX, NBC News, NBC Entertainment, MTV and Nickelodeon. Additional channels are expected to be added to the line-up after launch.
The programme guide includes date, time and program information, and also allows customers to view programming details up to 48 hours ahead of the scheduled broadcast. A dedicated V CAST Mobile TV website will feature a customised programme listings grid; a search feature to discover programmes by keywords;  content information and previews; and editorial and community features, as well as service information and support. The service also includes optional parental control features, consistent with existing multimedia standards, which will be accessible from the Options menu, to allow parents to set ratings for TV and movies.