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DTV transition will present mobile marketers opportunities

With the DTV transition only weeks away there still remains a great deal of uncertainty amongst consumers and brands alike as to what it really means. Will it affect mobile?

Beyond affecting the home television experience, there are a number of technologies that stand to be big winners in a post-DTV world. Following the DTV transition, Flo TV will deliver a nationwide footprint, available to over 200 million Americans in over 100 markets by year's end.

"That means millions more Americans will have access to live mobile TV, opening up an incredibly powerful marketing channel," said Jonathan Barzilay, senior vice president of programming and advertising at Flo TV. "Giving consumers that level of immediacy in the palm of their hand creates powerful opportunities for brands to connect with and better understand consumers."

The Flo TV service brings full"length episodes of TV shows, right to users' phone. Flo TV's lineup of live programming includes CBS, NBC, CNN, MTV, ESPN and Comedy Central, to name a few.

On June 12, broadcasters will transition from an analog to a digital signal, allowing the transmission of more information more efficiently, and with vastly improved picture and sound.

For those in the wireless space, the DTV transition frees up valuable spectrum for advanced mobile services like live mobile TV and interactive video and data services not available on analog.

For Flo TV, this opens up spectrum to create the first national footprint for live mobile TV.

However, the DTV transition will bring with it some challenges for mobile.

The challenge lies in device ubiquity and consumer adoption through education.

"Considering the response FLO TV has already received, we feel very good about the road ahead," Mr. Barzilay said. "Once consumers sample mobile television on Flo TV, they are amazed at the quality of the experience."

In order to address these challenges companies in the mobile TV space need to evolve their distribution through new devices and new platform partnerships similar to Flo TV's recent Audiovox deal.

The deal will ensure Flo TV is accessible on a multitude of screens.

"In addition, we continue to forge new content partnerships to bring our subscribers the leading content brands," Mr. Barzilay said.

After the transition, Flo TV will be available on the LG Envision, LG Vu, Samsung Access and Samsung Eternity on AT&T wireless, and on the Motorola Krave and LG Voyager on Verizon Wireless.

Beyond wireless, FLO TV and Audiovox have partnered to bring live mobile TV to automobiles in fall of 2009 with an aftermarket device.

For Flo TV, the DTV transition allows us to fulfill our promise of making Flo TV's live mobile TV available to Americans nationwide," Mr. Barzilay said. "This allows us to share our product with a broader audience and to enable that audience to enjoy the benefits of live mobile TV.

"For marketers, the DTV transition presents an incredible opportunity to reach a national audience via an exciting new media channel," he said. "More and more consumers are captivated by their mobile devices and savvy marketers will leverage the medium to create powerful connections between consumers and brand."