things," said Alex Kanakaris, Wi-Fi TV's president.
The business model, Kanakaris said, is an updated version of the
classic broadcasters' strategy. Viewers can watch programming for
free, and advertisers foot the bills.
Visitors to the website can select channels by country of origin
or programming topic, allowing advertisers to target viewers by area
Topics include news, finance and music videos. A religion
category, added after the site launched, includes Costa Mesa-based
Trinity Broadcasting Network as well as channels from faraway places
such as Estonia and Israel.
Wi-Fi TV's international selections include channels from China,
Saudi Arabia and the Philippines. And one of the globe's smallest
countries is represented -- the site offers a live feed from Vatican
Kanakaris described the Vatican's programming, which is available
for only part of the day, as "one of the coolest things on here."
Wi-Fi TV's American channels range from C-SPAN to a live camera
showing images of the Monterey Bay Aquarium's shark tank. Listings
also include American programming aimed at Cuba.
The company that became Wi-Fi TV was founded in 1995, Kanakaris
said. Developing the website, he said, took "forever."
The finished product, Kanakaris said jokingly, required "years of
toiling in the field -- and blood."
Kanakaris wants to add more channels and possibly delve into the
pay-per-view business. He thinks Internet-based video-on-demand would
be a far better way to watch movies than renting flicks at stores
that can run out of copies.
In the company's early days, Kanakaris wanted to make music, books
and video available over the Internet. He now wants to concentrate on
"We've been working on movies and TV on the Internet, and we want
to be No. 1 in the world in one of those categories," he said.