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MTV, Sprint in mobile programming deal

The cable network plans to air TV shows via Sprint mobile phones starting next month.

MTV Networks and Sprint are joining forces to bring TV programming to mobile phones, the companies said Wednesday.

The companies plan to deliver music, comedy and other TV segments to Sprint PCS subscribers beginning in October, they said. The programming will consist of short segments from numerous MTV channels, including Comedy Central, VH1 and Nickelodeon, MTV said. It also plans to air content exclusive to mobile phone viewers.

The programming will be available through Sprint PCS Vision Multimedia Services, a wireless service that enables customers to view video on their phones.

Encouraged by the popularity of ring tones, the mobile phone industry is betting on big demand for mobile phones that can morph into tiny entertainment devices capable of playing music and video.

Earlier this week, MTV, a division of Viacom, said it planned to distribute music videos to mobile phones in a licensing deal with Warner Music Group. The company is also working with VeriSign to study trends in mobile entertainment.

Sprint is working with Walt Disney to develop phone programming from the ESPN sports network as well as Disney entertainment for children.