FLO TV adds On-demand, time shifting

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When Qualcomm’s FLO TV came out last November, it seemed alright. A bit expensive for the initial investment, but a reasonable device if you didn’t want to stream media over your smartphone. Well, Qualcomm is making the FLO TV a little better with their latest update, due 2Q2010.

Some of the new features are great, some not so much. Specifically, you’ll be able to pre-record your favorite shows (and take them with you wherever), and buy pay-per-day passes that will allow you to use your device as needed, rather than paying that pesky monthly fee. They are also adding interactive capabilities that will allow you to get more information about a show or advertised product. The update was announced today, however don’t expect to see it on your devices until the “second half of 2010″.

From the press release:

LAS VEGAS – April 13, 2010 – FLO TV Incorporated, a wholly owned subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated (Nasdaq: QCOM), today announced at the 2010 NAB Show in Las Vegas (Booth #SU1424) that it is working to enhance its mobile TV service with new applications that integrate video with Web-based content and social media tools. The expanded capabilities are in response to the ways in which consumers today are simultaneously viewing and interacting with content.

“With consumers’ mobile entertainment habits evolving rapidly, FLO TV will be integrating its current live linear video with relevant, on-demand content and interactive features that complement the programming viewers are watching in real-time,” said Bill Stone, president of FLO TV. “Our innovative, nationwide multicast network is at the heart of this solution and will allow us to distribute live mobile TV and rich mobile media services to a range of new devices from smartbooks to e-readers and tablets.”

In addition to integrated experiences, FLO TV announced an expanded suite of mobile TV services, including interactive capabilities, pay-per-day and event passes, and time-shifted viewing options. The new features will be available on the FLO TV service across a range of mobile devices in the second half of 2010. New service applications will include:

* Interactive features that will enable users to interact with programming and advertising, allowing consumers to click for more information about a show or click to buy an advertised product.
* Pay-per-day passes designed to offer pay-as-you-go flexibility, providing consumers the ability to watch the FLO TV service without committing to a recurring monthly subscription. Event passes will provide an easy way for existing FLO TV subscribers to add premium content such as limited engagement, special events to their programming lineup.
* Time-shifted viewing, or â??catch-up TV,’ that will allow popular shows to be stored on FLO-enabled mobile devices, thereby granting viewers the ability to watch their favorite shows on-demand, even outside of a coverage area.

At a time when mobile devices such as smartphones, e-readers and tablets are proliferating and data consumption is increasing, FLO TV’s nationwide network can alleviate cellular network congestion to meet the growing consumer demand for mobile media access across a wide range of devices.

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