AT&T COO: "I don't know" if "consumers want to watch TV on their handset"

At the CTIA show in Orlando today, AT&T's COO Randall Stephenson formally announced plans for the new AT&T Video Share service to be in as many as 50 markets by this summer.The plan: to let subscribers broadcast full color streams captured live from the phone's camera to another AT&T Video Share user.

At the CTIA show in Orlando today, AT&T's COO Randall Stephenson formally announced plans for the new AT&T Video Share service to be in as many as 50 markets by this summer.

The plan: to let subscribers broadcast full color streams captured live from the phone's camera to another AT&T Video Share user. For right now it is strictly P2P, user-generated content, but eventually will use one-to-many-broadcast technology incorporated with the PC and TV.

What this sounds like, at least to me:

AT&T is working with handset manufacturers to enable multi-platform sharing compatibility with Video Share, and:

AT&T will devote quite a few lawyer hours to crafting licensing agreements with key video content providers.

But will that second initiative pay off in terms of millions of millions of eyeballs, paying extra to use the network?

Building on the UGC-themed speech, Stephenson announced that AT&T's video share service will launch in 50 markets this summer, enabling subscribers to broadcast full color streaming video captured live from the phone's camera to another AT&T video share user. Stephenson noted that the service will launch as a one-to-one, peer-to-peer service, but will soon become a one-to-many, broadcast technology that will make use of the other two screens: PC and TV.

 "Will consumers want to watch TV on their handset? Quite honestly I don't know," Stephenson said.

My hunch is that rather than being a braggart and risk being caught later on by underperformance, he is literally setting modest targets. 

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