Culture

UK streaming service BritBox launches with Channel 4 deal

UK streaming service BritBox launches with Channel 4 deal”

The first streaming service to pool content from Britain's terrestrial broadcasters has launched in the UK.

As well as the deal with Channel 4, BritBox has also partnered with BT, which will package in the streaming service - which costs £5.99 ($7.69) a month - across a range of offers for its millions of customers.

The BBC/ITV collaboration has signed a three-year partnership with Channel 4, which brings thousands of hours of TV shows and films from All 4 and Film4 to BritBox, all available from 2020. But BritBox will have the widest selection of British made programming by far. However, Channel 5 dramas are not included in the deal.

Some analysts say BritBox's limited investment in original contect may spell trouble in a crowded and highly competitive market. It is said that these will be added from Boxing Day, 26 December.

The exec admitted that uniting the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5 has been "no mean feat", telling the programme that "We've had to work really, really hard to pull the PSBs together".

There's also a partnership with EE which has been announced as EE's exclusive mobile partner.

In September, BritBox announced its first distribution deals to make the streaming service available on services including YouView, Freeview and Samsung TVs.

With an interface mimicking that of Netflix's, content is neatly organised in collections such as "Watching the detectives", "Thrill me: TV's best thrillers" or "Made in Yorkshire", with all content distinctly and recognisably British.

BritBox is being billed by the four as "the biggest collection of British box sets available in one place".

In the next six months, BBC will launch seven seasons of The Great British Bake Off on the service, as well as Les Miserables and The Split, in addition to The Office, Happy Valley and Doctor Foster.

BritBox originally launched back in the USA in 2017 providing access to programmes like Midsomer Murders, Poirot and Only Fools and Horse to a USA audience ($6.99pcm).

More BBC and ITV shows will appear on the service as licence agreements with streaming services like Netflix expire.

Doctor Who fans will find 627 episodes of the classic, originally broadcast between 1963 and 1989, available to stream from Boxing Day.



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