Czech Republic - TV in your pocket proves popular with viewersTuesday, February 6th, 2007
The launch now only depends on an amendment to the existing law
- Most users watched TV on their handsets daily
- The most widely watched channels: CT24 and Ocko
- Most appreciated features: Portability and picture quality
PRAGUE — T-Mobile has published the results of the commercial testing of “TV in your pocket”. The testing, aimed at determining the potential of the service and building the foundations for its commercial launch, took place in the Prague area from 23 October to 5 December 2006. Over 250 users participated in the testing, including T-Mobile customers, partners and employees.
“The results of the testing confirmed that ‘TV in your pocket’ is quite popular with our customers and that it has great potential,” says Jiri Dvorjancansky, Executive Vice President Marketing at T-Mobile, adding: “The commercial launch now only depends on the licensing process. We are convinced, however, that all parties involved will together manage to overcome this legislative barrier.”
User behavior during the testing confirmed expectations: Most respondents watched TV on their handsets at least once a day, largely when traveling by public transport or waiting in a queue. The monitoring was performed in short time slots (about 20 minutes). CT24 was the favorite TV channel, followed by Ocko, Filmbox and t-music. Portability and picture quality were the most appreciated features, while limited coverage was perceived by customers as the biggest drawback. This was understandable, however, given the test operation. As far as payment methods are concerned, most customers prefer a fixed monthly fee for a package of channels while the majority of viewers are also interested in individual purchases of a selected channel.
Over 14 days, which was an average user’s period of DVB-H testing, four-fifths of all users switched on the test handset at least once a day. The average length of the viewing period was 20 minutes, while 34% of the respondents watched TV broadcasting on their mobile phones for 20 to 30 minutes, 26% for 10 to 20 minutes, and 23% for more than 30 minutes.
A full 78% of respondents watched a selected TV channel while commuting or waiting for public transport. Many of them also watched TV at work and at home.
Viewer ratings and evaluation of the channels
The following channels were included in the test: CT24, Ocko, Filmbox, TOP TV, Playboy, t-music, National Geographic, EuroNews, Jetix and Tourist Info.
Evaluation of the service
Portability and picture quality were the most widely acclaimed features of “TV in your pocket”, while the product was also considered comprehensible and easy to use. Limited coverage was the biggest drawback, resulting in a weak signal and the handset “freezing up”. However, these deficiencies can be easily resolved as they were largely related to the pilot testing.
The definitely preferred option is the fixed monthly fee for a package of channels, as opposed to a payment for watching one channel, whether on a daily or monthly basis. The optimal price for the basic package would be about CZK 100 while a premium package would ideally cost CZK 200.
Commercial launch – coming soon
According to the test results, “TV in your pocket” holds great potential and it is no wonder that T-Mobile is currently preparing its commercial launch. The fundamental obstacle to this is, however, the current wording of the Broadcasting Act, which forbids cross-ownership by providers of broadcasting networks and content providers. T-Mobile would therefore not be able to offer TV broadcasting on a commercial basis.
Jiri Dvorjancansky remains an optimist: “We believe that all parties will find a common ground and that the present obstacles will not hinder the full launch of ‘TV in your pocket’. After that, all that is needed is to find space in the air for ‘mobile TV’. And even here, the situation is not hopeless: It is clear from the CTO’s activities that there is a strong will on its part to resolve the situation.”