20060216

Play it again, Samsung ?

Mainland Chinese mobile TV operators ordered 500,000 Samsung DMB-T phones, but in Hong-Kong SAR / Xiang-gang, big figures don't necessarily mean good news :

  1. Hutchison Whampoa sold a 10% stake in 3, but to Goldman Sachs and for a lousy 420 million euros. They keep delaying the IPO and see their deal with Skype fall in the shadow of Telefonica's "Plug'n Talk" VoIPo3G solution (even if, for the beginning, it is limited to laptops & PCs through USB & Memory Sticks).
  2. PCCW Wireless added 310,000 new 3G subscribers in January, but without disclosing the cost of their welcome packs (six month of line rental fees, 10,000 mn of local calls per month, unlimited SMS, unlimited 3G browsing... why did only 310,000 take it ?).

The Chinese jackpot was just one part of Samsung's PRsenal in Barcelona : the kings of crossbar confirmed their ambitions for DMB-T in Europe (trials with TF1 - Bouygues Telecom starting later this month, SGH-P900 on time for the 2006 World Cup, undisclosed negociations with several MNOs...), but will also be ready for DVB-H (SGH-P910) and MediaFLO. Besides, Koreans (for a start) will enjoy an exciting SPH-B4100 which allows simultaneous T-DMB and S-DMB*. There's also fish to fry about Microsoft (i320 with Windows Mobile 5 and a keyboard), HSDPA (Z560) and naturally WiBro (a new device - M8000 - and a new deal : Telecom Italia will use Samsung Wibro solutions next year).

To celebrate in music, Samsung decided to showcase a supposedly customer-oriented (but MNO / CSP driven) SecureMMC application lyrically dubbed "Music download service supporting OMA v2 DRM & MMC with Beep Science"... Play it again, Sam ?

Another player put his cards on the table : Option exhibited GlobeTrotter FUSION+ HSDPA (a HSDPA/UMTS/EDGE / Wi-Fi / PEPPERONI / ANCHOVIES combo Data Card) and GlobeTrotter GT MAX (a tri-band HSDPA / 3G UMTS Data Card already snatched by Cingular GlobalConnect for a promising new plan : unlimited at home + 100Mb abroad). Down the corridor, CSI Wireless tried to plug their fixed wireless (GSM or TDMA) phones : Series 405 (basic) and Series 415 (speaker phone capability + internet access & email via PC).

As expected, HSDPA is getting mainstream (ie Intel working hand in hand with the GSMA to boost embedded HSDPA in laptops) and HSUPA starts making noise far beyond the darkest alleys.

As expected also, "mobile TV" is more often heard than "wireless data". But even if "mobile goes TV" looks strong in the charts, this is only 3GSM radio, and we soon will move back to the "TV goes mobile" tune**.

* 2 channels at the same time, in other words. On the same mini-screen ? Korean will soon outclass Japan in miniaturization. When you think Ninendo consider adding a mobile TV tuner to their DS Portable gaming systems...

** the Murdoch lads managed to sell once again their Sky By Mobile (skybymobile.com) concept. This BSkyB's mobile counterpart to Sky By Broadband leverages on the whole Sky machine : Sky TV by mobile, Sky News, Sky Bet, Sky Digital, Sky Sports (including the Baclays Premiership and UEFA Champions League)...



1 comment:

pachydermus said...

Hi,

Sky TV sponsored, paid for, produced and telecast an illegal street race in Mumbai called 'Road Raja'. It is appalling that such a huge media house should decide to put 5 UK celebrities in a dangerous and reckless race on the streets of a third world country, endangering hundreds of lives, when it wouldn't have the guts to do so in its own countries of operations and
domicile. To find out more about this, please visit a detailed write-up at
http://www.lazyreader.com/blog/index.php/archives/215.

While I appreciate yours might not be the best forum for this call for an apology, I believe that as consumers of a corporation as large as BSkyB, we have the right to demand more responsibility and stronger ethics when they spend the money we pay in subscription fees. The email address for BSkyB's Corporate Responsibility unit is also available at the above link. Please write to them directly demanding an explanation for this outrage.

If you are not interested in this cause, sorry to have taken up a few minutes of your time.

Thank you

Best,
Pachydermus

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