First mobile TV -'UTV' launched

Updated: 2012-12-11 06:32

By Sophie He(HK Edition)

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China Mobile Hong Kong Co Ltd, the only mobile TV operator in Hong Kong, launched its first mobile TV service "UTV" on Monday in Hong Kong, which includes both free and paid content for Hong Kong users.

Initially, UTV will offer a total of eight channels, including two free channels; the paid package costs HK$58 monthly.

UTV is a cross-network multi-platform service which users can subscribe to and watch television programs through Android smartphones, iPhone and TV dongles (wireless adapters), tablets, computers and TV boxes (Internet connection device for TV).

The free TV programs content, will include user-generated content and TVB news, while the paid packages include MNC International, Mei Ah HD Movie China, channel M HD, Star Chinese Channel, Nat Geo Wild HD as well as Cartoon Network, according to a China Mobile Hong Kong statement.

"China Mobile's new UTV service offers the market's most accessible pay TV experience, in terms of the price of paid packages as well as its device compatibility," Sean Lee, chief executive officer at China Mobile Hong Kong, told a press conference on Monday.

Lee said that China Mobile Hong Kong is actively discussing with its partners about launching more channels on UTV in the future, but there is no timetable at the moment.

He refused to disclose the total investment for UTV as well as the estimated number of customers, but he believes that people in Hong Kong will be interested by the service as the TV programs can be enjoyed through various devices.

Currently, the company has no advertising revenue from UTV, Lee added.

But he stressed that the smartphones have entered into a "video era", which means that watching videos and TV programs on mobile phone is a clear trend.

"Backed by the large number of 3G and 4G smartphone users in Hong Kong, the launch of UTV is favorable to the company's overall business."

China Mobile Hong Kong, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of China Mobile Limited, was incepted in January 1997.

With the launch of its new UTV service, China Mobile provides Hong Kong residents with even more choices, Lee said in a statement.

(HK Edition 12/11/2012 page2)