Europe's first nationwide cell-phone television service was expected to be announced Monday. The Financial Times said Microsoft, BT and Virgin Mobile were teaming up to launch the service around the middle of the year that would offer phone subscribers in the United Kingdom access to five television stations as well as a number of radio stations.

The service will be branded as Virgin Mobile TV and offered on a wholesale basis by BT, the British fixed-line telecom company.

The tech industry has been largely bullish on the idea of mobile users watching their phones as well as talking on them.

The service underwent a four-month trial in Britain last year, and a similar service was recently launched in South Korea.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International