Mobile TV pilot begins in Finland


ESPOO, Finland - This week Digita, Elisa, MTV, Nelonen, Nokia, Sonera and YLE (The Finnish Broadcasting Company) are starting a unique mobile TV pilot in Finland. The project tests mobile TV services and consumer experiences, as well as the underlying technology, with 500 users in the Helsinki capital region.

Selected from Sonera and Elisa mobile phone customers, the test users are able to view real-time TV and radio programs on a Nokia 7710 smartphone equipped with a special accessory to receive mobile TV broadcasts. The Nokia smartphone also enables direct links to the Internet for access to background information on TV programs or sports results. Test users have access to MTV, YLE and Nelonen programs as well as international theme channels such as CNN, BBC World, Euronews, Eurosport, ViVa Plus and Fashion TV. The pilot continues until 20 June 2005.

Elisa and Sonera are responsible for customer service, invoicing and connections to the new interactive supplementary services. Digita has designed and built the digital TV network needed for the distribution of mobile TV services and will manage the network, while Nokia will develop the mobile TV service management and smartphones that can receive mobile TV broadcasts.

The mobile TV test uses IP Datacasting (IPDC), which conforms with the DVB-H standard. At the end of 2004, the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) adopted DVB-H as the standard for European mobile television services, enabling the simultaneous transmission of several television, radio and video channels to mobile devices.

First user tests promising

The first mobile TV service experiences in Finland happened via a friendly user test carried out in late 2004. The test showed that people like to watch mobile TV in cars and other means of transport and in public places such as cafes. Watching mobile TV at home and in the workplace was also common. The most usual time was in the mornings and afternoons and early evening.

The test users were interested in news, weather, sports, current issues, entertainment and drama and comedy series. Mobile TV was also considered as a complement to the traditional television. What appealed most to test users was the fact that you can watch mobile TV anywhere you like. According to the results, most of the test users would be prepared to continue using mobile TV services.

For additional information on Finland's mobile TV project go to:

Digita Oy offers its services to media and information technology companies. Digita' s customers reach Finns both at home and on the move with ease, confidence and cost efficiency. The company's nationwide and highly competent organization ensures a high level of services 24 hours a day. Digita's customers include TV and radio companies and mobile and broadband operators. Digita is part of the international TDF Group.

Elisa Oyj is a provider of overall telecommunication services, which offers versatile voice and data services, connections to the Internet and content services, telephony solutions, customized communication and ICT solutions, international communication solutions and network operator services.

Elisa's revenue for 2004 amounted to EUR 1.36 billion, and by the end of the year the company employed 5,376 people. At the end of 2004, Elisa's networks hosted a total of 1.22 million fixed subscriptions. The number of broadband subscriptions is soaring, amounting to 222,307 in the year-end. There were 1.38 million mobile phone subscriptions in Elisa's network at the end of 2004. Listed on the Helsinki Stock Exchange, Elisa has approximately 300,000 shareholders comprising domestic and international institutional investors plus Finnish households.

TeliaSonera Finland Oyj, the Finnish profit centre of TeliaSonera, offers products and services under the Sonera brand. TeliaSonera is the leading telecommunications company in the Nordic and Baltic regions.

At the end of December 2004 TeliaSonera had 15,411,000 mobile customers (51,359,000 incl. associated companies), 8,312,000 fixed telephony customers (8,943,000 incl. associated companies) and 2,017,000 Internet customers (2,056,000 incl. associated companies).

Outside the home markets TeliaSonera has extensive interests in the growth markets in Russia, Turkey and Eurasia. TeliaSonera is listed on the Stockholm Exchange and the Helsinki Stock Exchange. Net sales for January-December 2004 amounted to SEK 81.9 billion (EUR 9.08 billion). The number of employees was 29,082.

Yleisradio Oy (YLE) is a media company engaged in public full service television and radio broadcasting, whose tasks, operation and financing are defined by law. YLE makes programs in mainly Finnish and Swedish but also in Sámi, Romany and sign language. YLE is mainly state-owned, and its operation is principally financed through television fee revenue. YLE's objective is to guarantee Finns equal opportunities to obtain information, have experiences, be entertained and to educate and advance themselves.

MTV3 and Subtv channels are viewed every day by three million people in Finland. Together they accounted for 38% of TV viewing in 2004. MTV3 reaches more people than any other media in Finland. Subtv is a cable and digital channel that is growing fast, reaching 800,000 people in Finland daily in January 2005. MTV3 is Finland's biggest advertising media in terms of advertising revenue. Advertisements can be broadcast on MTV3 either nationwide or focused on up to ten coverage areas.

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