Updated with screenshots and inputs from ROK.
ROK will stream TINY TV, as the mobile TV application is called, into India from UK. The company has readied 14 channels as well as a Sony TV package for transmission. TINY TV is priced at Rs 150 (approximately $2.70c) per month.
ROK had launched Tiny TV with BSNL in 2007 but it was a pilot, Renny tells us. “We did a test launch more than a year ago to evaluate the network and then had to make technical changes to optimize the service for the network to get best performance possible,” he said. Since then, ROK has optimized the streaming quality and secured better content.
The ROK-Mehar JV has signed a multi-year contract with BSNL. Mehar’s managing director Jasjit Singh Puri heads the joint venture in Delhi.
TINY TV will bring Hindi news via News 24 and there will also be an international news channel. Other channels included are: Bollywood entertainment channel E-24, celebrity news on ROK Bollywood, Hindi songs on Geet, evergreen Bollywood music on Green, latest Bollywood hits on Red, devotional songs, a sports and a comedy channel. It will also bring three regional channels to cater to the Gujarati, Marathi and Bengali audiences. Regional language content is key in this market and the company could add more to increase uptake.
ROK is also offering a movie channel with full length movies that can be paused, fast forwarded and rewound – marks go to the application for offering this level of control. It does seem that it would be a task to just stream a movie over GPRS, forget forwarding.
We have mailed ROK asking what genres of movies these would be and if they are Bollywood or any Hollywood ones too. Renny informs us that it is a Bollywood movie channel with both old and new films.
A Sony package of SAB TV – Channel SET and Channel PIX is also included in the offering, which nicely rounds up the bouquet of channels.
In comparison, UTV, with its UTV@Play service offers music videos, live transmission of its business channel UTVi. Its mobile TV service UTV@Play is available on all cellular networks. Hyderabad based Apalya’s MiMobiTV is on Idea Cellular, Tata Indicom and BSNL’s 2G network, while BSE listed Aksh Optifibre offers content on 3G.
ROK has also launched products with Airtel and is now in talks with all the operators to launch its products, according to Renny. They will be making multiple product launches with most of the network operators. Expect ROK Comics, mobile video messaging and mobile email Yuurok in India soon. ROK’s other products include FreeBe TV and News on Demand.