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AT&T Approves 'SlingPlayer Mobile' Television Streaming Over 3G

AT&T today announced that it has decided to allow Sling Media's SlingPlayer Mobile iPhone application to stream video content over its 3G network. SlingPlayer Mobile allows users of Sling Media's "Slingbox" hardware to control and stream live and recorded content to their iPhones and iPod touches.

AT&T attracted significant attention when it refused to allow the SlingPlayer Mobile to stream video over the carrier's wireless networks, citing the potential for the video traffic to overwhelm its network capacity and create service issues for other users. Consequently, the application has been Wi-Fi-only in the U.S. since its launch in May 2009.

Since mid December 2009, AT&T has been testing the app and has recently notified Sling Media -- as well as Apple -- that the optimized app can run on its 3G network. The SlingPlayer Mobile app already is available for use today on AT&T's Wi-Fi network, the nation's largest with more than 20,000 hotspots.

In its press release, AT&T also took the opportunity to publicize its willingness to work with developers on bandwidth-intensive mobile applications in order to create the best possible experience for users.

"Just as we've worked with Sling Media in this instance, we look forward to collaborating with other developers so that mobile customers can access a wider, more bandwidth-sensitive, and powerful range of applications in the future," said Ralph de la Vega, president and CEO, AT&T Mobility and Consumer Markets. "Collaboration with developers like Sling Media ensures that all apps are optimized for our 3G network to conserve wireless spectrum and reduce the risk that an app will cause such extreme levels of congestion that they disrupt the experience of other wireless customers. Our focus continues to be on delivering the nation's most advanced mobile broadband experience and giving our customers the widest possible array of mobile applications."

Support for developers is offered through AT&T's dedicated developer site.