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Chinese can watch TV programmes on mobile screens

August 22, 2006 14:39 IST

Chinese mobile-phone users will be able to watch television programmes on their screens from mid-2007 when trial broadcasts begin, a year ahead of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

Digital Multimedia Broadcasting technology will be tested next year and a satellite system will be activated in the first half of 2008 so that the Olympic Games can be broadcast to mobile-phone users across the country.

The timetable was unveiled by the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television at the third China Digital TV Industry Summit Forum.

Residents in Beijing, the host city of the Olympic Games, will be the first group of people to benefit from the new technology through a chip in their mobile phones.

The country's two biggest mobile telecom operators -- China Mobile and China Unicom -- are likely to sign agreements with phone makers by end of the month to buy TV handsets.

Besides mobile phones, big-screen personal digital assistants and MP4 players will be able to receive TV signals, said Yang Qinghua, director of the television division of the SARFT's broadcast science research institute.

The standard to be adopted is totally indigenous and the country does not have to pay any patent fee to other countries, Wang Lian, a senior official with the administration, said.

The mobile-phone TV market in China is estimated to reach $756 million in 2008.

China has 426 million mobile phone users and in the next five years, about eight per cent of them are expected to subscribe to the mobile TV service, the report said.

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