At the NAB Show in Las Vegas this week, there’s a lot of buzz around mobile video, particularly mobile DTV.
In his opening keynote address, NAB President and CEO David K. Rehr said: "By 2012, we expect 130 million phones and 25 million media players will be able to receive mobile television. An NAB study concluded that TV broadcasters could see incremental revenue of more than $2 billion after 2012 with mobile DTV."
Cisco PR Manager Sara Cicero identified mobility generally as an area of particular interest this year.
"It’s the age of the consumer-driven experience," she said. "It’s definitely content, having your preferred content any time, anywhere, any screen."
The show schedule includes several sessions on mobile video, including "Mobile Video Entertainment to Go"; "Cool Gadgets, Hot Content"; "Mobile DTV: The Power of Broadcasting on the Go"; "Mobile Marketing: Ads on the Go"; and "Mobile, TV and Online: Successful Cross-Platform Strategies."
How much traction mobile video is likely to gain in a down economy remains a question, though. According to a recent survey by Opinion Research Corp., millions of U.S. consumers have already cut back on their cell phone spending, potentially making expensive "extras" such as mobile video a tough sell. (For more, click here.)
The economy is also expected to impact the show’s attendance. Kristopher M. Jones, NAB director of media relations, said the numbers were difficult to predict.
"Given the state of the economy, and knowing that CES (the Consumer Electronics Show, held in January) was down by 20 percent, we expect our attendance to be lower this year," he said. "We’ll know the full impact of the economy after assessing onsite registration."
Last year’s attendance was roughly 104,000, Jones said.
The cable presence
Though NAB is highly broadcast-centric, some cable folks are at the show as well. Cicero said Cisco’s focus for the show is "how do we help our content provider customers achieve their goals with next-gen video from production, to the contribution networks, to the distribution networks, and then leading into consumption."
A few other cable vendors with an NAB presence include Net Insight, Envivio, Tandberg, Triveni Digital, Symmetricom, Pixelmetrix, Harmonic, Adtec Digital, and BigBand. Click each company’s name to read some of their latest NAB news on CT‘s Web site.
– Ron Hendrickson
Read more news and analysis on Communications Technology‘s Web site at www.cable360.net/ct/news/.