Universal Pictures UK
, NBC Universal International Television Distribution
have announced a ground-breaking development for the entertainment industry with simultaneous digital distribution agreements bringing a wide range of NBC Universal content for purchase (via download-to-own) or rental (via video-on-demand) in the UK.
Content will be available for purchase and viewing on PC from the BT Vision store, a new film and television download service to be launched on 31st July.
From 31st July 2006, BT will launch a PC-based film and television download service, building to offer 150 Universal titles available on the same date as the UK DVD release. Consumers can purchase content for permanent ownership and will download two digital files to PC/laptop and a portable device, in conjunction with a DVD mailed by post.
With this agreement, BT Vision will offer NBC Universal movies on-demand in the UK, including films such as Inside Man, King Kong, Jarhead and American Dreamz, as well as a range of catalogue films and TV series.
Peter Smith, President of Universal Pictures International, commented: “We are excited that the UK consumer can look forward to even more choice and flexibility in accessing a wide range of NBC Universal content.”
“As the on-demand entertainment experience continues to evolve globally, this agreement underscores the importance of choice and convenience for the consumer,” said Beth Minehart, Senior Vice President of International On-Demand Licensing for NBC Universal International Television Distribution. “We are very pleased to be in business with BT in the UK, bringing their customers the great titles NBC Universal has to offer.”
Dan Marks, CEO BT Vision, added, “This is a very exciting deal that breaks new ground in the entertainment industry. Customers increasingly expect to enjoy entertainment when, where and how they want it and this agreement will help to make that possible. We are delighted to have concluded this groundbreaking deal with NBC Universal that enables BT customers to watch some of the world’s best entertainment titles through their TV, PC or portable player and choose whether to own or rent. They can also receive a DVD in the post as part of the package!”
BT Vision is a service which is delivered on a software platform powered by Microsoft and through a set-top box made by leading manufacturer Philips. Unlike other pay-TV services, there will be no mandatory monthly subscription.