Streaming TV comes to SA phones

2010-08-02 09:21
Cape Town - Vodacom has launched a streaming mobile service for its 3G customers that allows viewing of popular TV shows and music videos on the devices.

In partnership with On Demand SA, Vodacom has launched a mobile service that promises users whole seasons of popular international TV shows in cellphones.

"We'll be releasing Season One of the shows, and soon we expect to catch up to be close to where the current season is, but it will never be the same season," an On Demand SA representative told News24.

Vodacom has announced a subscription of R75 per month or R20 per week for prepaid or contract customers, and though there is a "fair use" policy but a spokesperson insisted that it would not be enforced.

"Look, there is a fair use policy and we don't want people to play music videos and just leave their phones lying there, but no, we don't want enforce it for now," said a representative.

No iPhone support

TV shows available include Sex in the City, Grey's Anatomy, South Park and Lost. While there are no South African TV shows available, Vodacom said that it would open the platform to local producers and users of the service do not pay additional costs for data.

"The introduction of subscription video on demand with full length programming to the mobile environment heralds a new era in the growth of mobile video," said Tony Kelly, CEO of On Demand Group.

Unfortunately, Vodacom said in a statement that the popular iPhone is not currently supported, but that it has been added to the company's "road map" for a future release.

While streaming mobile video has some measure of popularity in the UK and US, the trend over the last few years has seen fewer people watching more streams, though Vodacom would not be drawn to predict what the uptake might be in SA.

To activate the service, Vodacom customers with 3G phones can SMS "ondemand" to 31116 or visit Vodafone live! from their cellphones.

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