Bitbop mobile entertainment subscription service expands to Windows Phone 7
Jesta Digital, formerly known as Fox Mobile Group, has launched its on-demand mobile television and movie subscription service Bitbop for Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7 smartphone users.
The Bitbop service has been integrated into the Windows Phone 7 interface, including the phone’s Music + Videos Hub, which enables users to resume watching a previously accessed television program or manage their queue of chosen content. The mobile subscription service includes TV content from various networks and costs $9.99 per month.
“Our goal is to make Bitbop broadly available to all consumers who use smartphones,” said Chris Hoerenz, chief marketing officer of Jesta Digital, New York.
“We believe WP7 handsets will play an important role in reaching a significant consumer base with a high-quality, next-generation product that is well suited for a VOD product like Bitbop,” he said.
“Microsoft has been a great partner, and we are proud to be involved with their launch of these products into the marketplace.”
Jesta Digital is a part of the Jesta Group, the company that acquired Fox Mobile Group from News Corp. earlier this month.
Paid mobile entertainment content
Initially launched last year on Research In Motion’s BlackBerry phones and recently on Google’s Android platform, Bitbop’s wireless service is now available in beta on all Windows Phone 7 handsets via Windows Phone Marketplace.
The Windows Phone 7 Music + Videos Hub lets Bitbop subscribers start and stop viewing shows directly from the Hub without having to return to the Bitbop application.
“The target demographic for Bitbop is anyone on the go, who wants to stay connected to their entertainment,” Mr. Hoerenz said. “More specifically, we believe our target audience includes the business traveler, as well as the soccer mom.
“Similar to the smartphone demographic, we skew slightly male and serve an affluent consumer with an income slightly above the national mean, with an average age between 25 and 54,” he said.
Jesta is currently offering 60 days of free access to Bitbop’s full catalog of TV show to a select number of WP7 users who download and install the Bitbop application.
This promotion gives early-adopters of the WP7 phones a chance to stream and download full episodes of TV shows for instant or unconnected viewing.
Jesta claims that Bitbop mobile video can be viewed anywhere at any time over 3G, 4G or Wi-Fi.
Subscribers can choose from a selection of programming from various content partners and can browse and manage a personal queue of viewing choices directly from their phones or computers.
Bitbop offers unlimited full-length commercial-free TV shows for on-demand streaming or temporary download for $9.99 a month.
The company plans to offer full-length movies later this year. Soon consumers will be able to rent movies on demand for anywhere from $0.99 to $4.99 per movie.
Bitbop currently offers credit card billing, and the company will make in-application billing available as it launches the product in the various application stores.
“We have already begun marketing Bitbop via the Web and mobile Web channels, including search campaigns,” Mr. Hoerenz said. “As we launch on more handsets, we will begin a larger marketing push via traditional media channels.
“We also will work closely with our partners as they launch new devices and technologies,” he said.
“Finally, we have already seen word of mouth and media coverage drive significant interest in our product, which underscores that consumers are hungry top add high-quality entertainment to their devices.”