LOS ANGELES (MarketWatch) -- Walt Disney Co.'s ESPN division said Thursday that it would discontinue its Mobile ESPN wireless services, and will instead try to license its content through other carriers.
The start-up cell phone company, which started operations earlier this year, never was able to compile enough customers for the service that specialized in selling phones that keyed in on offering sports content. ESPN met with too much competition from larger wireless firms.
ESPN said it would try to market the content offered on the phones to larger wireless providers. The company said that although it was shutting down the phone service after a short tenure, it is now able to better sell the mobile operations.
"ESPN is now able to take advantage of market opportunities that simply did not exist with our content before we built the [network]. We remain committed to serving fans in the wireless arena," Salil Mehta, ESPN Enterprises executive vice president, said in a press release.
The company said the service will remain active until Dec. 31. Those who bought phones through the service will receive a full refund of their purchase price upon final settlement of their bill, the company said.