British broadcaster ITV has confirmed plans to phase out the use of both its VOD service ITV Player
and website as the digital destination for its linear channels and online content. In their place, the media co unveiled plans for what its calling the ITV Hub, a streaming service set to launch later this fall across mobile, desktop and connected TV.
Live streaming of ITV’s TV channels, which now accounts for more than 30% of usage on desktop and mobile, will be at the heart of the new service, offering audiences what company executives are hoping is a more compelling TV-like experience across devices.
Rufus Radcliffe, ITV’s group marketing director, said in a statement the new Hub service will present all of ITV’s channels and services “front and center with a distinct, digital look and feel building off the success of ITV’s rebrand.”
In addition, the service will be available on Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick, as well as the new Freeview Play service. The desktop service will see a merger between ITV’s on-demand pages and show websites, according to company reps.
Among the VOD programming to be made available on the service are new episodes of Seth MacFarlane’s (pictured) Family Guy and American Dad.
Paul Kanareck, ITV’s director of online, said that the demand for VOD “has come of age,” noting the Player service saw more than 11 million registered users last year. He said more details of the Hub service (including cost and who can sign up) will be made public in November.
Photo courtesy of Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, USA