Virgin Media O2 unveils Stream broadband-based entertainment service | VOD | News | Rapid TV News
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Reacting to a market where in its opinion there is a golden age of TV content but a dark age in terms of finding it, Virgin Media O2 has unveiled its new entertainment service, Stream from Virgin Media, combining TV channels with on-demand apps, streaming subscriptions and films.
VMO2 Stream Launch Box 26April2022
Available immediately, the new Stream from Virgin Media comes packaged in a box that is smaller than the remote that controls it and which is powered entirely by the Virgin Media O2 broadband service which is at launch a pre-requisite.

Putting the launch into context, the service provider cited research from MTM Group showing that while video-on-demand (VOD) is commonly the first type of TV that consumers turn to when looking for something to watch, live TV was almost on a par - with 36% of UK consumers claiming to turn to linear first, compared with 37% for VOD.

When asked what TV services they “could not live without”, MTM found that the top ten comprised, in order of popularity: Netflix, ITV, BBC, BBC iPlayer, YouTube, Prime Video, Sky Sports, Channel 4, Disney+ and Film 4. MTM also found that the TV set was increasingly the most popular way to view VOD programming, with 72% of programme streaming requests in 2021 happening through the TV set, growing from 54% in 2016.

Such findings said Virgin Media O2 reinforced the notion that typical viewing habits nowadays are a blend of subscription, on-demand and traditional TV and that the device can make older TVs smarter. Stream does not involve contracts - after a £35 activation fee, customers can change subscriptions every month- and brings together free-to-watch apps, free TV channels and subscriptions like Netflix, Prime Video and, for the first time on Virgin, Disney+. Other apps available on Stream include, BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, Starzplay, BritBox and YouTube as well as live TV subscriptions including Sky Sports and BT Sport.

Stream offers personalised recommendations across subscriptions – with enhanced features such as voice search and control, profiles and watchlists - and all selected subscriptions, free apps and TV in one place and available on one bill.

Explaining what the company wants to achieve with the launch, David Bouchier, chief TV and entertainment officer at Virgin Media O2, insisted that at a time of endless entertainment choice and a strain on household budgets, the company was putting viewers first. “Stream customers will only pay for the entertainment they choose and can pocket monthly savings on the content they add - it is a truly flexible and personal way to enjoy the entertainment that matters most, at great value,” he said. “Stream is more than just a new TV service, it’s whole new way to enjoy connected entertainment. More than ever, content and connectivity go hand in hand and with Stream we’re delivering the best of both.”