HBO launches British on-demand channel
Tuesday, February 13th, 2007

HBO, the US cable network owned by media conglomerate Time Warner Inc, has launched a subscription video on demand service in Britain to show such programmes as “The Sopranos” and “Six Feet Under”. The channel will be available via the new UK company Virgin Media, BT Vision and Tiscali TV, with the programming line-up updated on a weekly basis. The service will provide at least 50 hours of programming at its full rollout.

Virgin Media, the new UK company born from the merger of cable operators NTL, Telewest and Virgin’s mobile phone division, was launched last week, offering television, broadband and fixed-line and mobile phone services. BT launched its BT Vision in December and expects the offering to attract up to 3 million users. Tiscali offers broadband, telephone and its TV service.

“HBO’s programming has always done very well in the UK and the arrival of an HBO service has been long desired and anticipated,” Simon Sutton, President, Programming Distribution and International of HBO, said. HBO said the launch dates would be determined by the distributors and did not give any further details. HBO programmes such as “The Sopranos” are already available on UK television but a spokeswoman for the group said it was not available via any on-demand services.

(Source: Reuters)