One of the upsides for bringing all the nations of Europe under a single banner is that we’ve managed to see a (mostly) continental-wide currency, easier access between countries and more consistent standards when it comes to technology. OK, there are some holdouts, and a few nations that like to do their own thing (don’t change U.K., we love you just the way you are).
And while getting multiple nations to agree on certain standards isn’t easy, we’re already seeing some of the benefits. The latest of these could be the expected continent-wide standard for the delivery of television services to mobile phones. The current buzz is that EU media commissioner Viviane Reading may announce the Nokia and Motorola-supported DVB-H format for Europe-wide use. This isn’t even remotely unexpected, as DVB-H is already the most widely-adopted of the three mobile TV technologies currently used in the EU.
What is clear is that a world-wide standard won’t be happening anytime soon as DMB is widely used in South Korea and Japan, and as we reported yesterday Indonesia is adopting the Digital Multimedia Broadcasting format as well. In the United States we’re still tackling the situation, but don’t expect any such single format – we just like our choices too much it seems!
The issue in Europe is also far from resolved. Virgin Mobile could be a DMB-based technology holdout in the U.K., while rivals such as T-Mobile, O2 and Vodafone will likely support DVB-H. The driving forces for the mobile content next year could be the Beijing Olympics, and more importantly the European football championships.