Qualcomm subsidiary Flo TV has made the jump from phone handsets to its own consumer electronics devices: today the company announced the Flo TV Personal Television, a small portable device designed to deliver live and time-shifted television content to consumers wherever they happen to be. Flo TV’s content partners include NBC and Viacom (meaning NBC, Comedy Central, and Spongebob are on board), and and delivers content over a multicast network with no wait for content to download first.
“We have heard from customers that they want more choice and, specifically, a device that is easy to share with friends and family,” said Flo TV president Bill Stone. “With the FLO TV service available on mobile handsets, in-car entertainment systems, and consumer electronics devices like Flo TV Personal Television, Flo TV offers something for every kind of consumer on-the-go.”
The Flo TV Personal Television will feature a 3.5-inch display, and will offer up to 5 hours of viewing on a single battery charge. The unit will feature a capacitive touch screen for navigating the device’s interface, and features integrated stereo speakers, a flip-out stand for setting the device on a table or other surface, and will let users set reminders for when their favorite programming comes on. Flo TV’s content partners include CNBC, Comedy Central, MSNBC, MTV, NBC, NBC 2Go, NBC News, NBC Sports, and Nickelodeon.
The Flo TV Personal Television will have a suggested price of $249.99, and will operate via the Flo TV subscription service that runs as as low as $8.99 a month…so long as you pay for three years in advance. (One-year subscriptions are also available.) Pre-orders are available now, and Flo TV says the device will be at retailers in time for the end-of-year holiday buying season.
What remains to be seen is whether users will tap into limited broadcast choices via a dedicated device, rather than leveraging devices they may already own (like phones and media players) to get their video fixes. However, for folks who love news, sports, and other real-time broadcast television, the Flo TV may fill a niche not well-served by other devices and services.