Whilst I probably didn’t need to be able to watch television on my mobile phone, I can. As such I was tempted to sign up to Sky’s news and sports package for £5 per month. There is no obligation to sign up for any particular length of time, so I thought I would give it a month’s trial…and I must admit to being tempted to keep it for even longer. After signing up on Friday, I was given my first opportunity to try it out properly on Saturday as England played France in the world cup warm up.
I don’t have Sky television and can’t imagine the circumstances under which I would subscribe as I don’t have time the time or inclination to get my money’s worth. Nonetheless there are occasions when there are games that I would like to watch: the cricket internationals, the odd premiership fixture, and the occasional game from the championship…and last night’s rugby match. As it coincided with the need for someone to cook the dinner I magnanimously offered, and set about cooking whilst watching the rugby on my N95, placing the phone in a half-pint glass for want of a better mobile cradle.
The picture quality is ok, although I found it to be occasionally interrupted through the loss of signal or the need to have a moment of buffering…but this was only once or twice in the whole of the rugby match. The big issue with watching television on an N95, and a big issue with the N95 generally, is the battery life. Unfortunately I found that it wasn’t quite long enough to allow me to watch the whole of a rugby match, and it needed to be plugged in for the last ten minutes or so. This is obviously likely to cause annoyance if you don’t have a plug for the last few minutes of an exciting game that you have watched 90% of, it also raises doubts about its suitability for watching a 5 day cricket match.
Despite the battery problems I will probably keep the Sky Sports television package. Using it when I am out and about to get news and sports updates, and when I am at home to watch the odd game whilst doing something else at the same time…taking advantage of the phone’s ability to output the screen and sound through a traditional television. What it lacks in picture quality is made up for in accessibility and portability and price, but rather than thinking of it as television it is probably best think of it as radio with pictures. For those occasions you would want to watch a match properly (for example, when the great Norwich City are playing) then make sure you are in front of a traditional satellite tv, but when its a game that you would happily listen to on the radio, you will probably enjoy the event on the N95 a little bit more.