Bell Canada’s updated its Mobile TV service to introduce a bevy of new features and content. The mobile TV service now offers 26 channels of live programming and a pile of on demand content thrown in for good measure. The interface has been tidied up, a programming guide has made an appearance, alerts are now here so you won’t miss shows and flipping to portrait mode from landscape lets you browse the new guide while your current show plays on. Bell’s Mobile TV service is priced at $5 a month for five hours of content; overages — measured in hours — cost an additional $1 per hour, though using the service with WiFi is thankfully free. Is it worth the $5 on top of your already potentially pricey phone bill? Follow on through while we take Bell’s TV offering for a quick spin with words and some pretty video, too.
Navigation and use
From kid’s channels to sports, entertainment and news, there’s pretty much a piece for everybody here. We’d like to see movies in this app, we know that the focus is TV, but movies are still part and parcel of what TV offers. Notable live channels in the line-up include TSN, TSN2 — we’ll definitely appreciate the Formula 1 racing this summer — CTV, CBC and Treehouse for the youngsters. HBO is another example of opt-in service for which you’ll need to pay an additional $5. On Demand content gets refreshed on some unknown schedule, though, there seems to be a pretty deep selection on most shows we’ve looked up. An additional nicety would be to have an alert pop up when new On Demand content shows up, rather than us chasing the shows, they could simply let us know they’ve arrived.
Ultimately Bell Mobile TV is a pretty straightforward app that delivers TV without too much muss or fuss. Of course, some like the fiddling and seeing as that’s us, we were hoping for some advanced settings for quality in here, but alas none were present. In fact, no matter what type of connection we had — LTE, HSPA+ — the video quality seemed to stay about the same. Don’t get us wrong, that quality is pretty good; we’re not talking HD, at least not yet, though with the speed of connections we could see this sort of thing becoming a reality. Pricing is fairly low, so if five hours of content for your commute serves your needs this service might be worth having a look at. We like that Bell’s taken the confusion out of the equation and eliminated the worry about how much data you’re using by simply billing by the hour. But on the flip side, if you’re a heavy TV user, those 5 hours could disappear pretty quickly and things might get costly. As long as we can fit two Formula 1 races on TSN2 in during the summer months without blowing our monthly time allotment, we’re kind of on board. The app is sitting in the app store now if you’re curious to have a look.
Oh, and if you’d like to give the service a whirl on your very own Samsung Galaxy Note from Bell, pop back to the site tomorrow around lunch as we’ll be giving one away to some lucky Canadian — just the phone mind you, you’ll have to spring for the service.