Telstra has just signed a deal with channel Seven that will bring the Beijing Olympics to a small screen near year. The Olympics will be available for viewing by owners of 3G mobiles connected to the Next G network, although the pricing for this service has not been revealed.
The images will be live, a direct feed from Seven's television broadcast.
According to the The Australian, the deal cost Telstra $9 million, and it comes with a number of restrictions. It appears likely, for instance, that Telstra will not be able to run its own ads, but will instead take a direct feed from Channel Seven, including all advertisements.
It will definitely be interesting to see how well the Next G network holds up under the load. Telstra’s current Mobile TV offering are severely time-limited – you can only watch 200 minutes per month with the current Foxtel on Next G service, for example. The assumption behind this, we guess, is that people will watch the TV at different times, so the load on the network is balanced over the course of the month.
What may well happen with the Olympics, however, is that certain events – say the 100M Mens Freestyle Swimming Final – are likely to cause massive viewing spikes. If Next G can handle that, then it should be well-placed for television viewing in the future.
That assumes, of course, that the service is so reasonably priced that more than a few dozen people are willing to actually pay for it. But this is Telstra, so who knows? [The Australian]