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Live From 3GSM: Industry Stresses Mobile Search, Disses Mobile TV

The news is flying fast and furious at the 3GSM World Congress today in Barcelona. The wireless industry is hot-to-trot for mobile search, while mobile TV has fallen off the industry's radar screen as initial deployments have failed to excite consumers.
The news is flying fast and furious at the 3GSM World Congress today in Barcelona. The wireless industry is hot-to-trot for mobile search, while mobile TV has fallen off the industry's radar screen as initial deployments have failed to excite consumers.During the morning keynotes, speakers stressed the importance of growth for the wireless industry. This is especially important as wireless markets in Europe are near saturation with industry fears that growth in this market will slow.

The wireless industry seems to have cooled on the idea of mobile TV. After experiments in both Europe and the U.S., speakers aren't hyping this technology to the degree they were two years ago, when industry players such as Ericsson were stressing mobile TV as a growth point for the industry.

Last night during the company's news conference, Sony Ericsson head Miles Flint said that his company was excited by mobile TV, but that enthusiasm for the technology didn't take top priority.

Others present blame the cost of mobile TV handsets for the lack of uptake. Nokia, among others, is pushing for cheaper TV-enabled phones.

Mobile search and mobile advertising are the hot topics so far at this show, with carriers and vendors talking them up as the new catalysts for growth of mobile Web services.

Two companies seized the mobile content momentum this morning. Openwave and mobile advertising services firm JumpTap announced a contextual mobile advertising system called Openwave Contextual Merchandising, powered by the Openwave Profiling and Personalization System. That system is designed to help advertisers deliver targeted, behaviorally driven mobile ads to mobile search users.

Mobile search appears to be up for grabs. Despite big partnerships from Google and Yahoo, the mobile search market is open. Rumors broke last week that a consortium of European and U.S. carriers are planning to launch their own mobile search service, but no news of the service has hit the floor yet here in Barcelona.