Each month, we collect miscellaneous happenings, studies, trends or observations that you might have missed. This month we feature Katrina's aftermath, Verizon's Broadband campaign and a mobile TV trial in Finland.
For those of us who have attended many conferences at the New Orleans convention center, the post-Katrina TV images were hard to connect with our memories of the place. Our hearts go out to any of our readers who have been affected by this tragedy.
We want to thank all those in our industry who have contributed labor and equipment for creating and restoring the area's communications infrastructure. For example, wireless broadband networks based on Wi-Fi and pre-WiMax technologies are being set up for emergency crews in several of the affected areas. Financial contributions are sorely needed and can be made to the Red Cross ( www.redcross.org ).
Verizon's Broadband Push
To judge from the TV ads in the New York/New Jersey metropolitan area, Verizon is laser focused on broadband. Verizon Mobile's ads show a variety of comical problems using Wi-Fi at hotspots. They push the virtues of BroadbandAccess, their EV-DO based mobile solution, and the recent price reduction to $60 per month (from $80).
Other Verizon TV ads have been selling the benefits of Verizon Broadband (this time wired) for businesses.
Our own personal exposure to Verizon's latest push came last week, when a Verizon truck drove right past our front door installing the fiber for Verizon's new FIOS service.
It's a quantum leap for Morris Plains, New Jersey. We're still too far from the central office to get DSL and now we'll get fiber to the home.
Mobile TV Trial in Finland
To find out more about what programming people want on mobile TV and their willingness to pay, Nokia, TeliaSonera Finland and five other companies ran a trial, using Nokia 7710 smartphones and DVB-H technology. Results showed that 41 per cent of the pilot participants would be willing to purchase mobile TV services, and that a monthly fee of €10 ($12) is reasonable. Participants watched 20 minutes of mobile TV per day during the pilot, preferring familiar programming to new content, and sports and news broadcasts. ( www.nokia.com ) ( www.teliasonera.com )