Rob Hubbard, president of Hubbard Broadcasting, takes over for John Lawson as executive director of the mobile DTV consortium. News about the company has been relatively quiet since April when a merger with Dyle was publicly discussed. Hubbard says a merger with Dyle, the other mobile DTV consortium, isn’t on the horizon. ‘The technology we have is really the same so that there’s nothing except business relationship issues that prevent a consumer from seeing both services with the same device.”
Leaders from the two mobile DTV organizations candidly spoke this week at ATSC’s annual meeting about the possibility of a merger, saying the only difference between Dyle and the Mobile500 Alliance is a business philosophy.
A Mobile500 Alliance member says he expects the two mobile DTV consortiums to come together soon.
Mobile500 Aliance VP of Technology Brian McHale says the service that takes over-the-air signals for free and streams them to users who pay $12 a month is motivation to propel mobile DTV efforts.
At the NAB Show, the Mobile500 Alliance will share hard data from its on-going soft launch, like how many people are watching, when are they watching and how long are they watching.
The Moblile 500 Alliance, with Fisher Communications and Hubbard Broadcasting, is distributing 750 receivers in each market for use with iPhones and iPads. Nielsen and Rentrak will evaluate the launch data and Lincoln and Chrysler are the inaugural advertisers.
The new solution supports the Mobile500 Alliance business model while helping broadcasters get on the air quickly.
Three of the group’s stations will participate in the Mobile Content Venture’s Dyle service and its KSTW Seattle is joining the Mobile500 Alliance.
Broadcaster-owned MCV and Mobile500 showed devices and apps that they say consumers may use to receive their broadcast-based mobile services later this year. But neither had a launch date or particulars about programming. Meanwhile, Syncbak demonstrated its authentication technology designed to give copyright holders comfort that the programming TV stations put on broadband networks will stay in their local markets.
The Open Mobile Video Coalition finds that while stations in 48 markets will be ready to go, tablets, smart phones and other personal devices capable of receiving the signals will be not be available until well into 2012. OMVC is working on the necessary guidelines so that samples can be built and shown to retailers at the Consumer Electronics Show in January.