Cellphone Revenues Lure NewsCorp and CBS

01 March 2006

The apparently insatiable consumer demand for cellphone content is to be met by media giants News Corporation and CBS Corporation.

Rupert Murdoch's NewsCorp has just launched Mobizzo, a content company offering Cingular or T-Mobile customers games, ring tones, screen savers and video clips plus street art and tattoo designs. Average monthly subscriptions will cost $5.99 (€5; £3.40).

Meanwhile, CBS, recently spun off from Viacom, is launching CBS News to Go and ET to Go.

Both offerings will be advertising-free but neither has ruled out ad support in the future.

Opines Jeff Marshall, svp-director at Starcom MediaVest: "More than likely the advertising model is going to prevail over time."

He adds optimistically: "Ultimately, the model is going to play out where there will be pay-per [content], advertising and everything in between."

And John Stratton, cmo at Verizon Wireless, says the telco is currently experimenting with a two-tier content service for subscribers, one supported by ads and a more expensive service without ads.

Data sourced from AdAge (USA); additional content by WARC staff