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Consumers Want Local Broadcast Content on Mobile DTV

The Open Mobile Video Coalition (OMVC) this week released the results of a national survey that shows that 3 out of 4 adults want to watch DTV outside the home.

More than three-quarters (78 percent) of the respondents said they would be most likely to watch live Mobile DTV on a laptop, netbook, cell phone, or Smartphone outside the home, including while they are at work and while commuting. Slightly less than a third of the respondents with children in the household said they would give the mobile device to their child to watch while traveling in their cars. The survey of 1,000 adults was conducted by conducted by Magid Media Labs.

"The results of this new national survey may surprise some, but not local broadcasters," said Brandon Burgess, ION Media Network CEO, and president of OMVC. "Online adults say that live broadcast TV programming is crucial, with more than half the respondents saying they want access to live, local broadcasts."

He explained that while now there is no service that is delivering "robust" off-air local TV news and information to portable devices, that should change soon with the rollout of many new products for receiving Mobile DTV services.

"Utilizing the newly-adopted Mobile DTV standard, a host of portable devices will soon make it possible to stay connected to local programs, sports, weather alerts, and favorite shows regardless of location," Burgess said.

Jaime Spencer, director of Magid Media Labs, echoed Burgess' comments as applied to laptop devices.

"The laptop has become a personal living tool for all generations," Spencer said. "There is really nothing it can't do when it comes to media and communicating. As it continues to be a more important part of our lives, it only makes sense consumers will want to use it and other mobile devices to watch live over-the-air DTV and Mobile DTV."

There will be a wide range of ATSC mobile DTV devices on display at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas during the first week of January. RF Report will provide information about these devices when they are publicly announced.

Doug Lung is one of America's foremost authorities on broadcast RF technology. He has been with NBC since 1985 and is currently vice president of broadcast technology for NBC/Telemundo stations.