Nigeria: DSTV launches Mobile TV

Technology & Convergence

An interview in claims that DStv will be launching mobile TV using DVBH in Abuja, Ibadan and Lagos.

The DVB-H service has been in pilot trials in South Africa since November 2005 with mobile provider MTN. A DVB-H-enabled phone was being passed around at the Africa Media and Broadcasting 2006 conference and the picture was pin-sharp and the sound very clear. And clear enough to see a football in play.

In her conference presentation, CEO of DSTV's M-Mobile subsidiary, Linda Vermaas said that 5-6 serious players were likely to emerge once the service went commercial. Handsets needed to be 3G and DVB-H enabled: MTN was promoting the Samsung P910 for use with this service. Transmission by DVB-H gives between 12-23 channels depending on the graphic complexity of what's being transmitted. The trial involves several thousand subscribers.

She said that while there was room for "made for mobile" content, the majority of the test material was either existing TV content or reversioned TV content. She seemed sceptical that advertising would make much of a financial contribution.