Mobile TV -- Part 1
I tried the Vodaphone Mobile Sky TV service this morning, it's free to all 3G users til the 31st of January 2006. There are around 11 channels on offer ranging from Sky News through to kids stuff such as Cartoon Network and Sky Sports ;0) The service is accessed through the Vodaphone Live wap portal and is pretty simply to navigate. Just click on the link of the channel you require and Real player opens and starts buffering. After a brief buffering pause of about 3 seconds the video kicks in, I say kicks in but in actual fact it kind of stumbles in at around 9 frames per second.
The quality of the content is objective, lets be honest, there really isn't a great deal of good stuff on TV these is there? The quality of the video stream is *poor*. As I mentioned the frame rate is low - couple this with the low resolution, high compression and telephone quality audio and you have a frustrating experience.
Having said all that, I can see uses for this service even in it's crippled state. Connecting to Sky News on my Nokia 6630 in the event of some major news item would be much easier than trying browse the BBC News wap site. Kids would probably be quite happy watching Cartoon Network on long car journeys. Watching MTV for a few moments whilst waiting for the train.
The service comes in several flavours, £5 a month gets you the more popular channels or you can get Channel 4 and a couple of other duff channels for £2.50. But give it a go now whilst it's free!