Monday, September 19, 2005

Mobile Industry Prepares for Cell Phone Porn

Technology News writes that the "industry group representing major wireless telecommunications carriers is working on a ratings system for content, a move seen by some as a sign that those companies are preparing for widespread distribution of pornography and adult content to cell phones."

The article cites research for Yankee Group that claims mobile porn is already a US$100 million a year business in Europeand could be even larger in the U.S. "Yankee estimates that by 2009, U.S. sales of pornography to cell phones will be close to $200 million." One argument is the market could grow even larger if the carriers can find a way to provide adult content in a safe, secure manner.

Telecom analyst Jeff Kagan said, "the one thing mobile carriers won't want is for such content, including that available on the mobile Web, to be downloaded by their users without them being in the loop. Mobile carriers can say their content is optimized for their network and they can make it easier to access. In that way they can ensure they don't lose out on a new revenue stream," Kagan added

Ovum analyst John Delaney noted "Vodafone rolled out a service that automatically blocks phones from accessing adult content, a feature that would be popular with parents who buy phones for their youngsters."