A dress rehearsal of the coming battle between the new AT&T and Verizon Communications got underway Tuesday as AT&T's Cingular Wireless unveiled a mobile TV service and Verizon Wireless launched TiVo Mobile for remote recording of TV shows.
The Cingular Video service, based on RealNetworks' Helix Online platform, is being launched in 16 cities across the U.S. The service offers clips from several television shows ranging from the Disney Channel and the Cartoon Network, to HBO's The Sopranos and Sex and the City.
Later this month, Cingular plans to exclusively offer NCAA men's basketball video highlights over the streaming video solution.
"Cingular Video provides consumers a simple and easier way to access the latest news, sports, entertainment and weather clips whenever they want," said Sam Hill, vice president of the firm's Mobile Browse and Developer Program, in a statement. Helix OnlineTV provides encoding, indexing, managing and delivery of content in different formats.
Priced at $19.99 for Cingular's Media Net Unlimited data package, the HBO offerings require additional subscription fees. The streaming video launch was made in the wake of AT&T's announcement that it was acquiring BellSouth. The two firms had jointly owned Cingular.