Mobile TV market to gain steam in 2012, says ABI Research

Worldwide adoption of mobile TV will gain momentum in 2012 through 2015, when total market revenues are forecast at more than $20 billion, predicted ABI Research. Principal analyst Fritz Jordan pointed out three major impediments that will be resolved: the lack of free and simulcast local/national TV programs as a primer for fee-based premium content; limited analog-to-digital TV transitions that would allow broadcasters to simulcast mobile and terrestrial TV services; and 3G mobile service that is inadequate for mobile TV.

Additional inhibiting factors include mobile broadcasting rights and mobile network operators with a lack of media industry experience. Jordan also noted the relative lack of devices ready to receive the U.S. broadcasters’ mobile DTV broadcast signal. But once the analog-to-digital TV conversion is complete, the barrier to entry for broadcasters will be low, approximately $100,000 per tower for mobile services. Jordan predicted an increase in the number of TV-centric mobile devices.

In another study, ABI Research said that app downloads will peak in 2012 to 2013 and begin a slow decline. Nonetheless, the number of apps is staggering. The research firm estimates that some 1.2 billion apps will be downloaded at the end of 2015.