TV: To-Go vs. Terrestrial

Imagine for minute that you want to watch, say, the Super Bowl or some other big television event. But it’s only available on your phone.  That’s right. None of the "terrestrial" networks are carrying it. Hard to imagine?  It happened in South Korea

Cable TV and other media that are considered as "non-mainstream" are threatening the realm of conventional terrestrial TV.

The latest case was a challenge made by a one-year-old sports channel Xports, which is buying up broadcasting rights for matches of the South Korean national team.

On Wednesday night, Xports exclusively aired the national team’s match with Syria. It was the first time a national team match was not shown on the three terrestrial TV channels _ KBS, SBS and MBC. Adding insult to injury was the fact that the Korea-Syria match was also viewed on versatile mobile phones with satellite DMB functions, another emerging medium of entertainment.

Satellite TV on a cell phone? Evidently, it’s spread so widely in other parts of the world that it’s starting to rival traditional — "terrestrial" — TV. Well, it’s here. And though you may not find it’s your only option for some television events, it’s set to offer more options. It’s expanding into Europe and other countries, through companies like Pantech and Samsung. It’s also coming to Canada and Latin America. Now, I find out that my wireless carrier launched its own video service a week ago, along with two new phones to go with it. 

Boy, am I behind. I haven’t even gotten a video iPod yet.  Now my phone is outdated, and have to choose which new phone to get; never mind deciding what to watch once I get it.