has been chosen by Virgin Media to power their online video offering, comprising a range of factual and entertainment content, sports and movies. Narrowstep currently powers more than 150 TV-over-IP channels, including Go Beyond TV for Land Rover, London TV, RomeReports TV, and ITV Local.
Virgin Media uses Narrowstep's TelvOS internet TV technology platform and services to co-ordinate and enable the management and play-out of their recently-launched internet TV offering which can be accessed at http://www.virginmedia.com/
by clicking on one of five genre-themed on-screen buttons: Gaming, Knowledge, Movies, Sport and TV. Content includes a mix of entertainment from Virgin Media Television channels such as LIVINGtv, Bravo, Challenge and Trouble.
Whereas short-form broadband video clips have been around for years, the ability to deliver television-quality long-format streaming is a relatively new achievement and an area where Narrowstep is setting itself apart from other internet TV providers.
David McCourt, CEO and Chairman of Narrowstep, said, "As more and more consumers are seeking video online, it is important to deliver top-end content in an efficient and usable manner. Our partnership with Virgin speaks to Narrowstep's ability to deliver and monetize high-quality, interactive, long- form content."
Jason Boswell, Acting Head of Commercial Development, virginmedia.com, said, "We set out to take the best of both worlds - the linear viewing experience of TV and the interactive two-way experience of broadband - to play out the video content people want to watch with browsing and click through opportunities, archive access and advertising. Narrowstep provided us with the industry-leading technology platform to do so."
Virgin Media was formed in 2006 through a combination of cable businesses: ntl:Telewest and Virgin Mobile. The merged business became the UK's first 'quadplay' media company bringing together digital TV, broadband internet, mobile phone and fixed-line phone services.
The new business includes a 50% stake in UKTV, a joint venture set up between Telewest's Flextech content division - now known as Virgin Media Television - and the BBC's commercial wing, BBC Worldwide. Virgin Media Television's wholly-owned channels also include Bravo and LIVINGtv.
Virgin Media's digital TV service is Virgin TV, the UK's second largest pay TV service in the UK. Virgin Media's online portal, http://www.virginmedia.com/
, currently attracts between ten and 12 million users each month, making it a top 15 UK website.
Visitors to virginmedia.com see a simple menu of different content genres and users can also access archived content. Advertising is then scheduled around this content. The technology allows Virgin to sell and schedule ads around content, report back into the business and then onwards to clients the exact number of viewers who saw any ad.