Everyone’s got the video bug. It started with broadcast TV, moved to cable/satellite/telco, invaded the Web and now is set to explode on the so-called third screen, cell phones. According to ABI Research, mobile video telephony services (video mail, video call and video sharing) are set to grow from $1 billion in 2007 to more than $17 billion in 2012.
And yet, even beyond economic issues (the monthly cell phone bill) and business model issues (who gets what revenue), there are still technological challenges in delivering consistent, high-quality video. Video delivery is no simple task. You’ve got compression, encryption, transport platforms, prioritization, bandwidth, decryption and variations in end-user devices to think about. Or at least somebody has to think about those things (ahem, Motorola…). As a consumer, you get to fire up your handset and just see what there is to see. But keep some of the details in the back of your mind as you wonder why the mobile revolution isn’t happening faster. It’s coming. After all, that $17 billion has to go somewhere.