NBC To Offer On-Demand Mobile TV Shows

NBC Universal and MobiTV have announced a deal which will make full-length episodes of MBC primetime television shows available for purchase on an on-demand basis to mobile phone users. The deal includes shows from NBC’s broadcast television lineup, as well as selections from it’s cable properties Bravo, Sci-Fi, USA Network, and Telemundo.

“This is an extraordinary partnership with MobiTV and we’re excited to be the first major network to offer our viewers wireless access to their favorite primetime shows on demand,” commented Jean-Briac Perrette, president, NBC Universal Digital Distribution, in a statement. “In addition, this groundbreaking deal with MobiTV will create another platform for NBCU’s partner advertisers to reach their audience.”

MobiTV plans to make full episodes will available for purchase for $1.99 each, although wireless operators may impose their own rates on the service for their customers. Viewers will be able to watch the episode as many times as they like in a 24-hour period. Programming scheduled to be available to mobile users includes Heroes and The Office from NBC’s broadcast lineup, as well as Monk and Battlestar Galactica from USA Network and Sci-Fi. Free, ad-supported NBC selections will also be available as part of the MobiTV base subscription package, including the football drama Friday NIght Lights and Bravo reality series Shear Genius and Work Out. Telemundo offerings will include full-length episodes of the telenovelas Pasion de Gavilanes and Decisiones, although it’s not clear from MobiTV’s materials whether those are on-demand or ad-supported offerings.

MobiTV packages are currently available on many wireless carriers, including Sprint, Cingular/AT&t;T, and Verizon Wireless in the U.S., as well as many mobile operators in the U.K., Latin America, and Canada. MobiTV currently claims to have more than two million subscribers. The deal marks an expansion of NBC’s partnership with MobiTV; the network was one of the first content providers to sign on with the company when it launched service in 2003.