Australian Newsagency Blog

A blog on issues affecting Australia's newsagents, media and small business generally.

TV shows going mobile in Australia

Mark Fletcher
June 26th, 2005 · No Comments

The Age and the Australian Financial Review are reporting this weekend about a twelve month trial to commence in July in Sydney involving Telstra and up to 1,000 users of the Nokia 7710 mobile phone whereby they will have access to 15 television channels.

Based on the recent news of an Optus PBL alliance (refer to my PBL/Optus comment) expect more to follow very soon.

This trial is along the same lines and based around the same technology as the trial in Finland which I discusses here a couple of weeks ago.

There’s nothing which dictates that content accessed via mobile technology must come from traditional producers/broadcasters. In several cities in the United States now audio and video news bulletins are broadcast by newspapers. Existing media companies will have to respond to these new technologies quickly so that they brand is accessible to new markets and old and new customers in those markets.

Also, with technology and production costs now lower than every before, watch for a new generation of content creators getting into the space.

So, the impact of these developments needs to be considered more broadly than just in terms of television. How where and for what cost we access news and information is in play. Especially in a country like Australia where mobile phone use is among the highest in the world.

These new devices and the technology enabling high quality video content to be accessed cost effectively almost anywhere will pressure print media companies and their supply chain. Businesses like mine in that supply chain ought to be working harder on ensuring consumer relevance in a mobile media marketplace. We can do this by being better at recharge business. We can also do this by offering content ourselves and by being part of the wireless access network.

As I write this I know that around 4,500 of Australia’s 4,600 newsagents will not be aware of these developments and how they might affect them. To more aggressively report to them could be seen as being a doomsayer. I’d hope that the publishers who created the newsagent network might brief newsagents on their view of the media landscape in five and ten years.

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