In a first for the U.S. market, the struggling Mobile ESPN network is offering live and complete football games for viewing on cell phones.
The service, announced Wednesday, will offer subscribers up to 25 games per month from ESPN and ESPN2, starting with Florida State vs. Miami on September 4, and will run throughout the 2006 college football season. The games also will be shown on air and on the ESPN360 broadband channel.
Only Mobile ESPN customers who opt for the Total Sports Package tier will get the games, which are included in the price and can be accessed with one touch from the service's Sideline on-screen menu. The Total Sports Package costs $25 a month in addition to the subscriber's choice of plans that start at $40.
All Mobile ESPN plans come with text alerts, real-time scores and news, ESPN.com Fantasy Manager and other features targeting the sports enthusiast.
Fans so far have been less than enthusiastic about Mobile ESPN, which formally launched nationwide in February. So has the Walt Disney Co. president and CEO Bob Iger, who said in May that sales had been lower than hoped.
Mobile ESPN wireless network voice and data services are provided on the Nationwide Sprint PCS Network and can utilize Sprint's EVDO wireless high-speed data network wherever it's available.