The TV biz was looking highly mobile on Monday in advance of the annual CTIA Wireless confab in Las Vegas, with Sony Pictures Television, Fox, NBC Universal and MTV Networks announcing mobile entertainment deals.
The mobile entertainment biz is still very much in the experimental phase in the U.S., though some of the majors are starting to harvest coin from mobile content deals in Europe and Asia, where the market is more mature and advanced mobile vid technologies more widespread.
Sony Pictures Television made the most ambitious move in unveiling a slate of mobile games and six new and returning Web serials designed as short-form bits ideal for tiny cell phone screens.
News Corp.’s Fox Mobile Entertainment wing unveiled the FoxMobile.com portal featuring a slew of content designed to be viewed on mobile devices. Site includes content from Fox Broadcasting Co., FX, Fox Reality Channel, Speed and National Geographic Channel cablers as well as such show-specific franchises as “The Simpsons,” “Family Guy” and “Nip/Tuck.”
NBC U tubthumped pacts with AT&T, Verizon and Blackberry maker Research in Motion to distrib the Peacock’s portfolio of more than 60 wireless-friendly websites dedicated to NBC, NBC Sports, USA Network, Bravo, MSNBC and Universal Pictures, among other properties.
MTV Networks has teamed with mobile vid provider mywaves to offer its first free mobile ad-supported vid package of clips and customized content from its various cablers.
Sony’s slate of Web serials is built around an Internet vid channel dubbed C-Spot, which is available on the Sony-owned Crackle.com platform, YouTube, AOL Video and Hulu, among others. The studio aims to program C-Spot something like a network with fresh material premiering Monday-Friday for a 13-week run starting this week.
Debuting on Mondays is “Hot, Hot Los Angeles,” described as a sardonic send up of soapy teen dramas. Tuesday is home to “The Writers Room,” a look at the inner workings of a fictional latenight talkshow hosted by actor/scribe Kevin Pollak. Wednesday will feature new segs of the existing web series “Gaytown,” starring Owen Benjamin living as a straight man in a place where gay men rule.
The 3-D animated skein “The Roadants,” described as the “Odd Couple” meets “Easy Rider,” anchors Thursday. Friday is reserved for new segs of “Gorgeous Tiny Chicken Machine Show,” a spoof of kidvid a la “Pee-wee’s Playhouse” and outre Japanese talk shows.
On weekends, C-Spot will highlight “best of” segs from the Web skein “Penn Says,” featuring comic Penn Jillette riffing on topical issues.
The CTIA confab runs Tuesday through Thursday.