Mobile TV – size matters

A panel of broadcast industry experts and insiders at the Media Guardian Edinburgh International Television Festival have united on one opinion about the potential for VIP visitors and senior executives from the broadcast world were invited to try out iWear personal viewing headsets from Vuzix. With the headsets on, mobile phones and other portable viewing devices such as the iPod Nano, are suddenly transformed into the equivalent of a 62" LCD screen.

Offered this option, 83 per cent of the experts who tried the headsets – including representatives from BSkyB and ProSieben – agreed that they would be much more likely to download and watch mobile content on a personal "big screen" display.

The panel results also revealed just how far the mobile TV industry still has to go and why bigger screens could be the key to unlocking market potential.

Some 40 per cent of the respondents admitted that they do not currently watch video content on their mobile screen, and of those that do, mobile video snacking is still the norm – 50 per cent watch for only two minutes on average and less than 15 per cent watch for longer than ten.

"Bigger screens mean more viewers for longer periods," said David Lock, Director of European Operations at Vuzik, "that much was clear. But what was also interesting is that while we expected people to say they would use the headsets to view mobile content while travelling, twice as many people said they would view content at home. The potential is certainly there for the mobile phone, as a connected device, to become a viewing medium of choice – but the screen size is critical to its success."

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