Qualcomm will shut down its FLO TV mobile television service -- which had attracted about 1 million subscribers in four years -- on March 27, 2011, and is offering customers who purchased devices for the service rebates through the end of April.
"In consideration of the FLO TV service ending on March 27, 2011, we are offering a rebate on FLO TV devices," the company said in a notice on its website. The FLO TV Personal Television device had carried a list price of $250.
In October, Qualcomm said it expects some layoffs to result from the service's shutdown but that it was "working to redeploy impacted employees."
The company has held discussions with AT&T about a potential sale of the wireless spectrum it bought to create FLO, Bloomberg reported. In March 2008, the company acquired five E-block licenses in the Federal Communications Commission's 700-MHz spectrum auction for $554.6 million to increase FLO TV coverage.
In its 10-K annual filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission last month, Qualcomm said it expected to incur restructuring charges related to shutting down the FLO TV business in the range of $125 million to $175 million for the fiscal year that ends in September 2011, "which are primarily related to certain contractual obligations."
Devices eligible for rebate are the FLO TV Personal Television, Audiovox Portable DVD Player with FLO TV and FLO TV Auto Entertainment. Customers must deactivate FLO TV service to obtain the rebate and service refunds will be pro-rated.
All claims must be submitted or postmarked by April 30, 2011, to qualify for the FLO TV Device Rebate Program. Customers can apply for the rebate at www.flotv.com/rebate.