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Verizon Wireless to bring TV to phones

Verizon Wireless is expected to announce network TV programming coming to its handsets.

CES 2007 has barely begun but Verizon Wireless should strike an early blow today by announcing it will soon bring full-length TV shows to its phones. Though the company is waiting for a 12:30 p.m. press conference to break the official news, the New York Times reported the plan yesterday. And indeed, Verizon employees wearing "Verizon TV" badges have been scurrying around the Palms Hotel, where the announcement will take place.

Verizon Wireless

According to the Times, the service will be available by the end of March and will feature shows from NBC, CBS, Fox, MTV, and possibly ESPN. The programming should come via the Qualcomm subsidiary MediaFlo, which has a dedicated network to transmit the high-resolution video.

This is hardly Verizon's first foray into multimedia; the TV announcement comes two years after Verizon first announced its 3G V Cast network and one year after the company unveiled its V Cast Music download service. Though clips of TV programming have been available for some time on the 3G networks from Sprint, Verizon, and Cingular, Verizon is one of the first networks to offer programs in their entirety. ESPN's involvement is also noteworthy, as it follows the collapse of the network's Mobile ESPN service earlier this year.

Exact details of available programs, pricing, and supported handsets weren't known at press time, but as Nicole Lee guessed earlier today, one such handset will be the LG VX9400. Check back soon for further updates.