Mobile TV's Weak U.S. Signal
Back in March, 2007, the outlook for Qualcomm's (QCOM) $800 million bet on broadcasting TV signals to cell phones was all smiles. Verizon Wireless had just launched the first commercial service based on Qualcomm's MediaFlo TV network, an eight-channel package, for as little as $15 a month. At about the same time, AT&T (T) said it would introduce MediaFlo by late 2007. Qualcomm even revealed it was testing the service with British Sky Broadcasting, a coup given the European Union's decision to back a rival wireless mobile-TV technology. Several Asian trials were under way as well. In short, MediaFlo was on a roll; analysts began predicting Qualcomm might spin off the business with a public stock offering as early as this year.
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