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Mobile TV tipped as one to watch

Scandinavians and Koreans, two of the most adventurous groups of mobile users, are betting on mobile TV.

Anders Igels, chief executive of Nordic operator Teliasonera, tipped it as the next big thing in mobile in a speech at the 3GSM World Congress, a mobile trade fair, in Cannes this week.

Nokia, the Finnish handset maker, is planning a party in Singapore this spring to launch its TV to mobile activities in the region.

Consultancy Strategy Analytics of Boston estimates that mobile broadcast networks will have acquired around 51 million users worldwide by 2009, producing around $6.6bn (£3.5bn) in revenue.

Mr Shin-Bae Kin, chief executive of SK Telecom, also at 3GSM, said: "We have plans to integrate TV with mobile internet services.

"This will enable viewers to access the mobile internet to get more information on adverts they see on TV."

LG Electronics of South Korea was demonstrating one at 3GSM that could display video at 30 frames a second. Footage shown on the handset was clear and watchable.

A speech on mobile TV by Angel Gambino of the BBC also drew a large crowd, suggesting that even those mobile operators and equipment vendors which are not particularly active in mobile TV yet are starting to look into it.

The jury is still out on whether TV and digital radio on mobiles will make much money for anyone.

But with many new services going live soon, it won't be long before the industry finds out.


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