The Search For Mobile Video - InformationWeek
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9/30/2007
05:48 PM
Fritz Nelson
Fritz Nelson
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The Search For Mobile Video

I am, simultaneously, both a consumer and creator of Web video, and as both, I'm wildly interested in the quest for good mobile video. I wish someone (including me) would rise to the challenge.

I am, simultaneously, both a consumer and creator of Web video, and as both, I'm wildly interested in the quest for good mobile video. I wish someone (including me) would rise to the challenge.I've been using Cingular's 3G video service (or is it AT&T Wireless by CV? Or is it AT&T Video, formerly Cingular Video? or is it Apple's little house elf? Oh, wait, I can't get 3G on the iPhone) for several months and it's getting incrementally better. The coverage footprint is increasing, seemingly by the day, the quality of the image is surprisingly high, and the programming choices are growing.

The problem is, it's not what I want to watch on my phone. I'm a simple man. I want really timely news -- the kind that I'll allow to interrupt me -- or I want something incredibly practical.

Yes, there's news. There's news from ESPN and CNN. But somehow I get the sense that it's watered down at best, created when those networks have time to edit existing footage, which doesn't mean "right now," when I really want it. How about football highlights mid-Sunday? How about breaking in for the latest Michael Vick arrest? Phil Spector trial shenanigans? Anything live that happens with Britney Spears or Paris Hilton. Or better yet, learn what I watch and text me when there's something new (exclude the porn during work hours, please).

On the practical side, I want help. I've got a portable device that streams video, so I can take it with me in the garage or the backyard. Content companies should investigate creating how-to video guides for just about everything, like how to put together those damnable children's toys at holiday time; how to add a hard drive to my TiVo; how to pick a lock (JUST an example, folks).

I suspect we're a long way from that -- the money for the mobile content companies in the short term is location-based advertising. (Thank you for letting me know Kohl's is having a sale on mock turtlenecks and I can add a $10-off coupon.)

Moi? Well, yes, I suppose there's something I can do about it, too, seeing as how I'm also a creator. But will you watch? More important, what will you watch?

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