The MVAS category that probably has the most potential and creates the most excitement is entertainment. The options are many, and some services are localized while others have universal appeal.
The earliest entertainment-related services were audience polling to decide the winners on reality-based TV shows, music selections played in lieu of a dial tone, and dating services with chat rooms that use conferencing technology.
Some entertainment services have worldwide appeal, but need to be tailored to regional tastes. These include subscriptions to “joke of the day” and horoscope readings. Voice blogging is also popular, as are network-based multi-player games, and, of course, gambling.
Perhaps the most popular entertainment service is viewing videos that are streamed to the handset from YouTube or other sources, as well as sports highlights and newscasts. Many of these “over the top” services utilize the broadband wireless network, but are not offered directly by the network operator. Operator revenue is based on metered data usage, and not directly from the service itself.
As interest in video entertainment grows, so will the desire for high quality of experience (QoE), especially if a viewer is paying a premium for it or it is accompanied by advertising, since the advertiser wants to make the best impression possible. In addition, the ability to provide quality video on a wide range of end user devices and be context-aware will become increasingly important, whether the device is a large-screen HDTV, a laptop, a tablet, or a mobile phone. Software that evaluates and tracks QoE will become increasingly important.