SlingPlayer Mobile for Symbian OS Coming: Tiny-Screen TV Everywhere

If you care about watching TV shows on a screen the size of a large postage stamp, Sling Media officially announced today it will bring Slingbox to those 82 million cellphones that use the Symbian operating system. The SlingPlayer Mobile for Symbian OS will launch first in the fourth quarter in Europe and Asia, with a United States launch happening soon thereafter.

So now there will be people watching TV while they drive and walk through airports, stumbling all over me. Great. Get the official word, after the jump. (Thanks, Brian!)

"Any program that can be watched at home will be viewable through a Slingbox on supported Symbian smartphones using 3G or WiFi, including support for terrestrial TV, Freeview, cable, and satellite TV. In addition, SlingPlayer Mobile lets users control their home personal video recorder (PVR) to watch recorded shows, pause, and rewind live TV or even queue new recordings while away from home."
They're talking a lot of phones here—the Symbian operating system runs around 71% of cellphones shipped in the second quarter of this year, including such household names as Sony Ericsson, Nokia, Samsung, and a lot more.

Sling Media Website

Press release: Sling Media and Symbian partner to bring personal TV home viewing to consumers

The Symbian Smartphone Show, London, UK- 17 October 2006 — Sling Media, Inc., a digital lifestyle consumer electronics products company and Symbian Limited, the market-leader in open operating systems for smartphones, today announced that the two companies are partnering to bring consumers a powerful mobile TV experience to Symbian smartphones.

Sling Media will deliver a version of its popular SlingPlayer Mobile software application, currently available only in the U.S. and Canada, for Symbian OS in select European and Asian countries during Q4 and will extend availability to the U.S. shortly thereafter. Unlike other offerings available on the market today, SlingPlayer Mobile delivers customers' complete home TV experience on mobile handsets using standard network connections, including 3G cellular and WiFi.

The new SlingPlayer Mobile for Symbian OS software package will enable users to transform their supported Symbian smartphones on S60 and UIQ into personal, on-the-go digital TVs providing anytime, anywhere access to their living room television experience. Any program that can be watched at home will be viewable through a Slingbox on supported Symbian smartphones using 3G or WiFi, including support for terrestrial TV, Freeview, cable, and satellite TV. In addition, SlingPlayer Mobile lets users control their home personal video recorder (PVR) to watch recorded shows, pause, and rewind live TV or even queue new recordings while away from home.

"Symbian's market leading position drove our decision to work with them and deliver the Slingbox experience to a large mobile customer base," said Blake Krikorian, co-founder and CEO of Sling Media. "People love their living room TV programming and simply want the ability to watch it on any device wherever they happen to be, whether at work on their PC, around the home on their wireless laptop, or on the go via their mobile phone. I've been using a beta version of the SlingPlayer Mobile on a Symbian smartphone, and it's pure sweetness."

Symbian licenses Symbian OS to the world's leading handset manufacturers. To date, over 82 million Symbian smartphones have been sold worldwide to over 250 major network operators. According to Gartner, Symbian accounted for about 71 percent of worldwide smartphone shipments in the second quarter of 2006.

"Symbian works collaboratively with its licensees and partners to foster innovation and set trends for new smartphone features and capabilities, thereby expanding the market for 3G-based multimedia applications," said Jerry Panagrossi, vice president, US operations, Symbian. "SlingPlayer Mobile is a breakthrough in mobile TV viewing that captures the essence of the new smartphone lifestyle, representing a new level of interaction with the world and immediacy for information and entertainment."

The combined mobile TV experience is driven by Sling Media's breakthrough product, the Slingbox. The Slingbox redirects, or "placeshifts," a single live TV stream from a standard or Freeview cable connection, cable box, satellite receiver or PVR to the viewer's 3G handset or PC located anywhere in the home or anywhere in the world.