Picking up the multi-platform pay-TV gauntlet thrown down by SkyGo, Virgin Media has launched Virgin TV Anywhere, a new ‘cloud-based’ entertainment service streaming Virgin TV customers’ content to PCs, laptops, tablets and smartphones.
As hinted by the cable TV provider as it posted its last set of financial results in October 2012 and available to all Virgin TV customers at no extra cost, the service offers the ability to stream live TV, with up to 45 channels to choose from at launch, depending on a customer’s TV package and method of access.
The line-up includes channels covering entertainment, kids, sport, news and factual, music and movies, and includes access to premium channels such as Sky Sports or Sky Movies for subscribers to these channels. Virgin TV Anywhere also features up to 4,000 hours of TV available to watch On Demand at any time, including Sky On Demand, featuring shows from Sky 1 and Sky Living, as well as Sky Sports and Sky Movies for those subscribing to these services. It also includes integrated access to catch-up TV services from BBC, ITV, 4oD and Demand 5. Virgin Media will be adding further channels to the line-up in due course.
Customers will be able to access Virgin TV Anywhere through the web or through a mobile and tablet app if they have Virgin Media TiVo. The online service is available to all Virgin TV customers, with extra features for TiVo users to manage their boxes through a range of tools such as remote record and managing ‘My Shows’.
The mobile and tablet app, initially available on iPad, iPhone and iPod, offers the ability to fully manage TiVo boxes including scheduling recordings and deleting shows. The app also allows customers to rate shows, view suggested shows, and also acts as a touch/gesture-based remote control when at home. Embedded with social media functionality, Virgin TV Anywhere will also allow users to share their thoughts on their favourite TV shows, and includes a new app for mobile and tablet devices alongside a brand new online destination for laptops and PCs.
Cindy Rose, executive director of digital entertainment at Virgin Media, said: “The world of digital entertainment is moving so fast, consumers are always looking for the next ‘big thing’ to take advantage of the features and connectivity built into today’s gadgets. Virgin TV Anywhere builds upon our fantastic TV service, blending in the best of TiVo and our expertise in broadband and mobile, to bring customers a compelling entertainment experience to enjoy whenever they want, wherever they are – all at no extra cost.”