More rumors surrounding Apple’s iPhone are springing up this week, this time related to content as opposed to software features such as high-speed 802.11n Wi-Fi capability.
Silicon Valley Insider quotes “a plugged-in” industry executive as saying a Hulu-a joint venture of NBC Universal and Fox (News Corp) that allows users to stream high-quality television and films-application is coming to the iPhone and iPod Touch soon and is reportedly “badass.”
The report comes ahead of Apple’s second-quarter report on Wednesday, when the company will disclose earnings made between January and March 2009. The report cites the source as saying the Hulu application will be as good as the Website and is only months away from finding a home on the iPhone.
A recent report by digital marketing intelligence firm ComScore found Hulu was ranked sixth in sites used to watch video online. Google’s ubiquitous YouTube site ranked first.
While mobile video is still a nascent market, thanks mainly to poor quality and limited availability, in March mobile video solutions provider QuickPlay Media commissioned an independent Market Tools survey focused on mobile TV and video consumption in the United States. The results imply the market is poised to grow quickly-and soon.
The online survey of approximately 1,000 U.S.-based mobile subscribers between the ages of 18 and 35 suggests consumers are confident in the uptake of mobile TV and video, with 78 percent expecting an increase in usage by 2010. Additionally, the number of people watching TV and video content on their mobile device has remained steady from 2008 to 2009 at 35 percent.
The survey found for those who have not tried a mobile TV and video service, perceived cost continues to represent the biggest barrier to adoption, with 58 percent indicating that it is the No. 1 reason they have not viewed TV and video on their mobile phone. The results also found that while slightly less than a quarter of consumers are using a multimedia-enabled phone (24 percent), these devices will play a critical role in enticing consumers to watch TV and video on their mobile phone.
Mobile video requires a lot of bandwidth to view properly, and while that may be a roadblock to further adoption by carriers, the survey shows customers are increasingly demanding the option to watch video on their mobile device. The survey found 38 percent said if they were considering changing wireless carriers, their ability to offer the latest multimedia-enabled PDA or smartphone would impact their decision to choose that carrier, while 41 percent of respondents stated that they would be more likely to watch TV and videos on their phone if they owned a multimedia-enabled PDA or smartphone.
By combining the allure of Apple’s slick iPhone with Hulu’s breadth of content, the combination may be enough to move consumers to the iPhone, boosting AT&T subscription rate, iPhone sales figures and Hulu Web traffic. Hulu’s ease of use and slick design has earned the site praise. While CBS, Joost and others offer applications for the iPhone, Hulu’s high-quality resolution, wealth of content and expanding popularity make it well-positioned to be a popular offering when-or if-it comes to market in the next few months.