Saturday, February 6, 2010

NFL's RedZone Comes to Your Cell Phone

NFL's RedZone Comes to Your Cell Phone
Picture it. It's football Sunday. Your favorite NFL team is getting ready to play their big division rival and you've just settled in to watch and cheer them on, surrounded by your all your favorite snacks. But something happens and you get called into the office. Or maybe you find yourself having to work instead of lounge around in front of your plasma TV. Wouldn't it be great if you could watch the big game from your cell phone?

Well, next season, that dream may become a reality...sort of. The NFL has announced that it is planning to make the RedZone Channel available to cell phone users in fall of 2010. The RedZone cable channel provides coverage of big plays all day on Sunday, during the football season. It switches to any game when a team is within 20 yards of a touchdown, as well as showing all scoring plays, turnovers, and other big plays. The new cell phone version of the channel will be just like the TV version.

Prices haven't yet been set for the mobile version of RedZone. This year, Sprint customers could pay $15 a month for the company's NFL Mobile package (it was also included in their Simply Everything package). Also, DirecTV customers could pay $100 for the mobile feed for the NFL Sunday Ticket, in addition to the nearly $300 they already pay.

Some are wondering whether or not the new venue for watching football will cause broadcasters to see a decline in TV watchers. The NFL has billion-dollar deals with both CBS and Fox and last year, the league was one of the few businesses in the country that did not seen a decline, due to the economy. As a matter of fact, this season's games have seen record numbers of viewers.

But former president of CBS Sports, Neal Pilson, says the networks need not worry, "Right now the sentiment among broadcasters is that this kind of wireless and digital product is only building fans' attachments to the broadcasts. So far, if you can avoid it, you're not going to choose your two-by-two-inch cell phone over your 52-inch, hi-def television."

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