Latest in Japan

Image credit:

Toshiba kills off Moba Ho, has flashbacks to HD DVD

Chris Ziegler

Seems like the picture's getting clearer by the minute for paid mobile TV content, and it's a pretty bleak picture indeed. Over in Germany, DVB-H subscriptions are dying a slow, painful death (despite a healthy push by the European Union) thanks to free DVB-T content and a lineup of compatible phones to match, and now, Toshiba is shuttering its four-year-old Moba Ho satellite-based service thanks to the overwhelming availability and popularity of one-seg tuners, which like DVB-T in Germany, offer programming at no charge. Technical advantages, and to a large degree, entertainment value both tend to get overlooked when you've got a free product competing against a paid product -- it's frequently a disruptive economic force that takes profit right out of the equation, and Toshiba's learning that lesson the hard way. Keep your chins up, though, guys; at least you lost this battle for an entirely different reason than you did HD DVD, right? Guess that's not helping much. Anyway, expect the service to vaporize by March of next year, with Toshiba planning to take a one-time hit of $232 million for the shutdown.

From around the web

ear iconeye icontext filevr