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Samsung Exports T-DMB Phones to China
Samsung Electronics, the world's third-largest cell phone vendor, Sunday said it will export 500,000 handsets for terrestrial digital multimedia broadcasting (DMB) to China.
The company agreed to ship 200,000 units to Beijing-based Jolon DMB, an affiliate of Beijing Radio Broadcasting, which plans to start the video-on-the-go services in April.
In addition, Samsung also doled out a contract to export 300,000 DMB phones to Guangdong Mobile Television Media for this year alone.
``China is second only to Korea in adopting terrestrial DMB on this planet. These export deals represent the homegrown technology's first genuine advance to other countries,'' a Samsung spokesman said.
Terrestrial DMB enables people on the road to enjoy crystal-clear video, CD-quality of audio and data via in-car terminals or hand-held gadgets like cell phones.
Korea embarked on commercial services of the mobility-specific broadcasting, which are free of any charge like other over-the-air programs, last month for the first time in history.
Under a wide-ranging business alliance with Samsung, Jolon DMB plans to transmit airwaves for the mobile TV services in April and Guangdong Mobile Television Media looks to follow suit soon.
``China's DMB phone market is expected to gain steam at a rapid pace after the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games and we gain a platform in the country with these contracts,'' the spokesman said.
Samsung president Lee Ki-tae noted the firm looks to grab the attention of mobile users with its terrestrial DMB phones in Europe in addition to Korea and China.
``Armed with cutting-edge technologies and sleek designs, we will preempt the world's DMB phone markets in Germany and France as well as China,'' Lee said.
Already, many European countries have started tilting toward terrestrial DMB from among the various systems available for mobile TVs including DVB-H of the world's primary cell phone producer Nokia and MediaFlo created by U.S. chipmaker Qualcomm.
Britain is poised to start the trial run of terrestrial DMB in April and forged a partnership with Korea last November to achieve that end.
Germany will roll out the terrestrial DMB services in time for the World Cup this summer and France is also looking to jump onto the DMB bandwagon this year.
The prospects of the go-anywhere TV phone market are also bright as the compelling handsets are regarded as the next big thing to bring together two of the world's foremost consumer technologies _ TV and mobile telephony.
According to the Credit Suisse First Boston, the global investment bank, the market for mobile broadcasting phones will reach 10 million units in this year before exploding to 40 million in 2007, 90 million units in 2008 and 150 million units in 2009.