The broadcaster is partnering with Motive Television PLC to test Motive’s mobile service that would deliver signals to smartphones, tablets and other portable devices using a dongle with DTV receiver.
Granite Broadcasting is joining with London-based Motive Television PLC to develop a system that can be used to broadcast linear channels and VOD programming to smartphones, tablets and other portable devices.
In a joint venture, Granite and Motive will soon begin a testing the technology at independent KOFY San Francisco and other Granite stations.
Among other things, the Motive technology permits stations to broadcast movies and TV shows in non-real time to mobile devices that will record them for later viewing.
To receive the service, consumers will have to attach a dongle with a DTV receiver to their devices and download an app.
Granite CEO Peter Markham says that Granite has not “fleshed out” a business model. “We thought the concept was compelling enough for us to say, ‘Let’s develop this together. Let’s use Granite’s resources to test it … and use our people to think about applications for it.’
“Once we’ve done that, we can figure out what the right best business model is in terms of how we generate revenue ….”
Markham says that Granite is a member of the Mobile500 coalition that is trying to develop a mobile DTV service similar to Motive Television and the company remains committed to it.
The Motive joint venture is on a “parallel path,” he said. The big difference is the Mobile500 service is meant primarily for users on to go, while the Motive joint venture is aiming for iPad users in their living rooms.
Len Fertig, CEO of Motive Television, says that the company’s technology is already proven commercially, albeit in a non-mobile application.
According to Fertig, Italian broadcaster Mediaset is using it to provide a wireless pay TV service to more than 300,000 subscribers throughout Italy. The Mediaset service is home-based with subscribers receiving the service via antenna and set-top box.
The Mediaset service comprises 40-50 movies per month and rebroadcasts of popular TV shows, Fertig said. It’s priced at €15 to €20 ($19-$26) per month.