Interview: Michael Schueppert, president of Crown Castle Mobile Media

Crown Castle is the company rolling out the DVB-H network in the US (and some other countries, like Australia). This is a remarkably good interview with him about mobile TV in the US, covering a wide range of topics… including DRM (they went with MS because OMA would only be on mobile phones) and competitor Qualcomm (which he was much more polite about than the journalist, who described the US giant as playing “a frantic game of catchup”). One of the most telling is this note about challenges:

Really, the biggest challenge for us is figuring out exactly the right content to carry. Some people think that it’s all about news. Some people think that it’s all about sports. Some people think that it’s all about cartoons.
Some people think that you’ve got to have existing channels that people already know and love, and may know the schedule. Just take that existing channel and put it on the mobile broadcasting platform. Other people think, no, no, you’ve got to have a whole new channel that has content formatted [for mobile], and shorter form factors and shorter programming and less advertising.
Some people think it’s all about live content, some people think it’s all about cache content that’s played out on demand.

I was also interested in the note that Crown Castle sold its UK operation for $2 billion in order to focus on the US market because the states were a few years behind the Brits, and therefore still at the beginning of the growth curve.
Related stories:
Crown Castle Mulls Sale Of Australian Assets
Crown Castle Looking For Financing For its Mobile TV Project