Live Events Important for Mobile TV Success, Qualcomm CEO Says

Broadcasting live events is crucial to the success of TV on mobile phones and tablet computers, Qualcomm Inc. Chief Executive Officer Paul Jacobs said at a technology industry event in Silicon Valley late today.

“I believe in mobile TV still. Our approach to it didn’t get enough subscribers,” said Jacobs, speaking at the event in San Jose, California, hosted by the Churchill Club. Qualcomm garnered nearly 1 million subscribers for its Flo TV mobile- television service, he said.

The San Diego-based company suspended sales of Flo TV after it struggled to attract more subscribers. Jacobs said in an interview with Bloomberg Nov. 16 that he was considering a range of options for the Flo TV business, including putting it in a joint venture or shutting it and selling the spectrum.

Live sports and other events may be vital for TV services on phones and tablets, and vendors should allocate sufficient bandwidth to those broadcasts, Jacobs said today.

Requiring consumers to tune in to watch a show at a specific time was a “total non-starter” for Flo TV, Jacobs said. He appeared on stage with Jon Rubinstein, the Hewlett-Packard Co. executive responsible for the company’s Palm division.

To contact the reporter on this story: Aaron Ricadela in San Francisco at aricadela@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Mike Millard at mmillard2@bloomberg.net

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