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Mobile Entertainment On the Move

18 Dec, 2005 By: Kurt Indvik

Our mental image of the TV as the “small screen” is being radically altered in this age of 60” flat panel TVs and TV on cell phones.

Whether or not Hollywood has figured out what people will watch on their handheld portable media players (the multimedia cell phone being the de facto leader in this space), it's rushing full tilt to get content out there.

Just this week we hear HBO is going to offer mobile programming through Cingular Video, the wireless service provider's on-demand streaming video service. HBO will create exclusive content for Cingular with two new services, HBO Mobile and HBO Family Mobile, which will serve up episodes and clips of current HBO shows, animation and exclusive comedy and sports content.

CBS will be teaming up with Amp'd Mobile to deliver behind-the-scenes footage, previews, interviews and clips from such series as “CSI:NY,” “NUMB3RS” and “The King of Queens,” along with clips from “The Late Show With David Letterman.”

And Sprint is launching MSpot Movies, delivering movies, TV episodes and concerts from a variety of sources.

These are just the latest in an increasingly dizzy array of services looking to deliver mostly short-form content to the mobile environment. Much of this content can also include interactive elements such as games, polls and messaging applications designed to engage the consumer with the entertainment brand. And while much of this must be viewed as rich media marketing for entertainment companies, there is no denying the fact that in the coming year we will see a great deal of effort to deliver content to mobile platforms, often for a small subscription fee, thus taking another small bite out of the already hotly contested entertainment dollar.

Just one more reminder that the packaged entertainment industry must do everything it can to keep its product relevant in these very dynamic times.

Meanwhile, Home Media Retailing magazine will not be publishing an issue for the week beginning Dec. 26, in observance of the holidays. (And I'll be taking a hiatus from my normal Monday online column on Dec. 26.) Our next issue will be dated January 1, 2006.

The entire staff of Home Media Retailing wishes you and your family a very Happy Holidays!

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