(This post has been updated to reflect comment’s from Mobile500′s executive director.)
A member of the Mobile500 Alliance and the consortium’s executive director says a merger with Dyle could happen soon.
Speaking at a panel session Tuesday, James Goodmon, Jr., VP and GM of CBC New Media Group at Capitol Broadcasting Company, said both mobile DTV groups have the same goal of delivering free, over-the-air TV to mobile devices.
“We’re practically the same,” Goodmon said, when asked if there would ever be a merger between Dyle and Mobile500. “I think we will come together fairly soon.”
Erik Moreno, Dyle co-general manager, agreed with Goodmon. “It’s a shame. If you light up a station to go mobile, it’s on the (same) standard. The Mobile500 app picks that up and the Dyle app picks that up.”
John Lawson, executive director of Mobile500, says talks of a merger have intensified in the past weeks. “Both groups have known from the beginning that we need to unify efforts to be successful. It’s always been a question of when.”
Lawson said Sinclair Broadcast Groups’ decision to put its Fox stations on the Dyle network could be an indicator of a future merger. Sinclair is a founding member of the Mobile500 Alliance.
Since 2010, both groups have tried to make mobile DTV a consumer success. Dyle’s mobile TV footprint expanded this week to 57% of the U.S. population, in a total of 116 stations in 39 markets. Earlier this month, Mobile500 added a dozen Sinclair stations across nine markets to its list of stations who broadcast a mobile signal.