In a move that sees a major OTT service available for the first time on an established pay-TV platform, UK cable MSO Virgin Media has struck an agreement with Netflix that will see the service feature on the operator’s platform.
Using the Netflix app, Virgin Media TiVo households will be able to watch award-nominated Netflix series, documentaries, comedy and kids titles through their set-top box. Netflix will be available to 1.7 million Virgin Media TiVo homes this year, starting with a pilot launching this week.
The addition of the Netflix app to Virgin Media TiVo, the fastest growing pay-TV service in the UK, will allow viewers to discover Netflix original series such as House of Cards, Hemlock Grove and Arrested Development, and Netflix exclusives such as the hit series Breaking Bad.
The Netflix app complements Virgin Media’s ever-expanding collection of over 6,000 hours of On Demand entertainment, all ready to watch instantly. Virgin Media TiVo customers will be able to search and browse titles across Virgin TV’s entire collection of films and TV programmes as well as from Netflix and other content apps including BBC iPlayer.
Alongside catch-up and On Demand TV, Virgin Media viewers are already able to rent hundreds of blockbusters from Virgin Movies, subscribe to Sky Movies and PictureBox and watch channels including Film4 and TCM, all available in HD.
Dana Strong, Virgin Media’s chief operating officer, said: “We’re delighted to be bringing yet another groundbreaking service onto TV screens in millions of Virgin Media homes. Netflix is a fabulous addition to Virgin Media TiVo, enabling our customers to enjoy even more of their favourite shows and movies simply and easily – all through their TV set-top box and at outstanding value. Virgin Media TiVo offers different ways to watch, either subscription or pay per view, all seamlessly integrated for simple, intuitive viewing so there’s a world of great entertainment at your fingertips and everyone can be sure of the perfect TV moment.”
Bill Holmes, global head of business development, Netflix, said: “The UK has given Netflix a fantastic welcome and we’re excited to be partnering with Virgin Media to bring an amazing Netflix experience to Virgin Media customers.”
The pilot begins this week with around 40,000 Virgin Media TiVo households already selected to use the Netflix app. For the pilot, the Netflix application will be available in the Apps & Games section of Virgin Media TiVo with Netflix members able to log-in using their existing Netflix credentials and new members able to sign up for Netflix via the app. Netflix will be rolled out to all Virgin Media TiVo customers following the successful completion of the pilot later this year.
Through a dedicated broadband connection built into each Virgin Media TiVo set-top box, viewers will be able to experience a HD, big-screen TV Netflix experience. Virgin Media TiVo households with Virgin Media broadband can also make full use of their superfast 30Mb, 60Mb or 120Mb broadband speeds in addition to the dedicated TiVo connection.
The Netflix roll-out coincides with the latest updates to Virgin Media TiVo for all customers.