ITV Announces ITV Hub, an Online Home for Multiple Channels
U.K. public broadcaster ITV announced that it will transition its online offerings, closing ITV Player and itv.com and replacing them with the ITV Hub. This central destination will provide access to programming from ITV, ITV2, ITV3, ITV4, CITV, and ITVBe. Live streamed video will be central to the hub: The broadcaster says over 30 percent of its streams now are live programming.
Look for ITV Hub to debut in the fall. According to Paul Kanareck, ITV's director of online, ITV will share more details about the service at its ITV Gala in November.
The details so far are sparse. The desktop experience will be a combination of ITV's on-demand pages and show websites. The hub will be available on set-top boxes, including the Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick, as well as Freeview Play, all three of which will be a first for ITV. But as for how much live and on-demand content the hub will offer, the broadcaster isn't yet saying.
At launch, ITV2 will feature new episodes of Family Guy and American Dad, both Seth MacFarlane shows. That will be the first time those shows are available on-demand on a public broadcasting channel.
“With over 11 million registered users and 726 million long-form requests last year alone, our VOD service has come of age, with live TV right at the core of our proposition. Our product and content offering has improved dramatically," Kanareck says.
The BBC updated its iPlayer website and apps last year. Channel 4 showed off a new All 4 portal in March, 2015.
ITV's director of broadcast and distribution technology shared the broadcaster's strategy for merging catch-up and live linear TV into a universal consumer experience during the Streaming Forum 2016 keynote address.
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