Mobile TV services will generate $1.5 billion in revenue in 2008, according to the latest study of the much-hyped sector.
Informa Telecom said revenue would rise to more than $10 billion in 2013, nearly half derived from advertising.
The research firm said it expected the advertising model would increasingly replace the subscription model which predominates today.
Growth would be strongest in South Korea and Japan in the next two years, and despite isolated success in places like Italy and Austria, Europe was unlikely to see rapid growth until 2009.
"The USA is expected to take even longer as confusion over standards prevents growth," Informa said.
Shailendra Pandey, an Informa analyst, said a free-to-air business model was a good initial approach because it involved minimum capital investment.
"Once user uptake of services starts to grow, operators can then think of developing new revenue models that can be established on top of the free-to-air content platform."