Vodafone Germany and Orb Networks yesterday released their first common product called "Vodafone-Mein PC" (which can be translated "Vodafone-My PC").
Integrated into Vodafone's Live! portal, the Vodafone-Mein PC service is available to all Vodafone 3G customers to provide access to an always connected home PC to get all the Orb features (live TV, video, music and photos) on UMTS-enabled mobile devices.
Vodafone provides a pre-configured PC installer (basically the same as you can also get from Orb) which has to be installed on an always (broadband) connected PC. After, Vodafone customers can login to their PC by using the Vodafone Live! portal from the mobile device.
Vodafone-Mein PC supports all the standard Orb features which also includes live/place shift TV and Vodafone explains the advantages of its latest service as following:
- Listen Music: Get access to your MP3 collection and other music tracks
- TV: Transmit TV-streams to your mobile phone
- View Pictures: Take your photo album with you
Vodafone-Mein PC is available for all Vodafone Germany UMTS customers with the right device (most 3G devices can be used for it, only a handful devices are not compliant) and the tariff option "Vodafone-HappyLive!". According to the terms and conditions, Vodafone-Mein PC is in a public trial until end of September and Vodafone Germany reserves the right to stop the service after. In the case of rollover, Vodafone reserves the right to charge up to 10 Euro per month as a service fee.
As far as I understand the terms and conditions, the Vodafone-HappyLive! option (which costs additional 5 Euro per month) includes all data traffic which would be a good offer then because you wouldn't need a flat fee (which Vodafone isn't offering yet) to take your place shift TV, your complete music collection and your photo album with you.
Basically it's an interesting move forward Vodafone did here since it seems, that Vodafone Germany has realized, that most multimedia content, customers are interested in, are on home PCs already and giving customers access to these contents, through a high-speed network like UMTS is the right direction to go to. Nevertheless, Vodafone hasn't said a word if Vodafone-Mein PC is also accessible through HSDPA (which would be even better, quality-wise) and if it can be accessed via other, non-Vodafone networks, like hotel LANs, etc. (something the original Orb service offers since it is network independent).
Cheers ~ Arne