If They Build Them, Will They Watch?
Companies pouring resources into putting video services onto cell phones may be creating the kind of business bubble that proved disastrous to the Internet six years ago, a study by a Boston research and consulting company indicated Tuesday. In a report titled "Mobile Broadcast TV: Caution Needed as Bubble Grows," Strategy Analytics concluded that "the current hype surrounding broadcast mobile TV services remains out of proportion to evidence of consumer interest and willingness to pay." Suggesting that such services are being driven by a kind of it-you-build-it-they-will-come mentality, the study blamed mobile-phone vendors for pushing carriers to provide video services. "Their motivation is out of fear and uncertainty rather than opportunity," the study said. Ignoring such warnings, MSNBC.com today announced a new video mobile service with Action Engine Corporation to provide subscribers with access to sports and national and local news from their cell phones.