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ESPN, Verizon stream live football games to mobile devices

As college football season heats up, Verizon Wireless and ESPN Mobile TV are teaming up to give fans the power to watch games from their mobile device on the V Cast video platform.

ESPN Mobile TV will stream select NCAA football games live straight to Verizon Wireless mobile phones. Streaming will take place during the regular season from conferences that include the Atlantic Coast Conference, Big East, Big 10, Big 12, Pac-10 and Southeastern Conference.

?We've worked with ESPN on a number of projects and have had their programming on V Cast Video on Demand for quite some time,? said Debra Lewis, spokeswoman for Verizon Wireless, Basking Ridge, NJ. ?Adding the live games expands what we both can offer customers.?  

ESPN Mobile is comprised of several mobile products and services, including the mobile Web, mobile video, mobile television, mobile applications, mobile games and mobile alerts.

Verizon Wireless operates a wireless voice and data network and serves 87.7 million customers, making it the No. 1 carrier in the United States.

New customers with V Cast-enabled phones can access the mobile video service for a $10 monthly subscription fee, which includes access to full-length TV shows, news, sports, weather and live entertainment.

The subscription also allows access to the Verizon Wireless ESPN MVP service.

There are no megabyte charges to download, stream or watch V Cast content with any V Cast subscription. However, new customers must also subscribe to a data package for a data usage allowance.

The new V Cast video-on-demand plan replaces the $15 V Cast VPak. These changes do not impact existing V Cast customers.

Besides live game coverage, fans can access highlights, news and updates with V Cast Video, letting them catch up on the games at their own convenience.

Verizon will be launching a Web site that highlights all of the live college football action on V Cast.

ESPN has a successful application on the V Cast platform.

On it users have access to up-to-the-minute scores with Gamecast, can view video highlights and listen to ESPN radio clips. The application can also be personalized according to the user's favorite teams, players and ESPN columnists.

ESPN is not new to mobile.

ESPN MVP gives true fanatics the ability to manage their ESPN fantasy teams straight from their mobile devices (see story).

In addition to its partnership with Verizon, ESPN has a yearly SMS voting campaign with AT&T for college football.

Each week during the regular NCAA season, fans are asked to text in to vote for the player that they think is this week?s college football star. This is AT&T?s sixth consecutive year running the AT&T All-America Player of the Week program (see story).

Ms. Lewis said with V Cast, ESPN fans can stay connected while not in front of the TV.

?With all of V Cast Video, it gives people who are not always in front of a television set a chance to catch programs they may want to see ? either bits and pieces or in its entirety ? when they have a chance,? Ms. Lewis said.

?For example, if you're at an airport, or waiting to pick your kids up from school, you can check out a program you missed or check in on a live event, right from your phone,? she said.