Verizon's mobile TV service due in mid-2015

verizon couple
Credit: Verizon

A long, long time ago, Intel was going to be your next TV provider. That was in January 2013. But Intel discovered that creating a new TV service was harder than they thought it would be. After about a year of very little progress, they sold the whole business to Verizon at which point most of us completely forgot about it.

This week at the Goldman Sachs Communacopia conference, Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam announced that the service was still coming and is expected to launch in mid-2015. It sounds like the service will be aimed at mobile users and Verizon will offer a bundle of what he called "the big four" (ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox) in addition to custom channels (one example given, DreamWorks Annimation’s AwesomenessTV). He mentioned 'targeted content' that goes after the millennials who want to watch content on their iPads rather than on a TV and says this service won't be a threat to pay TV distributors including Verizon FiOS. You can read more about what he had to say at Deadline.

There're some interesting ideas here, but it'll be really interesting to see how much this service costs and if Verizon will somehow give you the bandwidth for free. In other words, I don't want to use my paltry 2 GB of data on a day of binge-watching some show on my phone.

I think a lot of TV customers get frustrated that they have to pay for a bunch of channels they don't watch and it sounds like, beyond the major networks, Verizon is going to offer channels à la carte. How much would you pay for a channel you wanted? I'm thinking something like $5, at the most. Even at that price your bill would rise pretty quickly if you watched content from half a dozen 'custom' channels (plus I assume some flat rate for the networks).

I'm not sure that I want a TV service on my phone but I am really interested to see how this all plays out.

Read more of Peter Smith's TechnoFile blog and follow the latest IT news at ITworld. Follow Peter on Twitter at @pasmith. For the latest IT news, analysis and how-tos, follow ITworld on Twitter and Facebook.

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