Netflix Strikes Pay TV Integration Deal in Canada
Bell TV has put the 'House of Cards' streamer on its Fibe TV service via a set-top box app.
Bell TV has become the latest Canadian pay TV provider to offer Netflix on its set-top boxes.
The Netflix Canada service is now available directly to Fibe TV and FibreOP TV subscribers after their IPTV receivers were upgraded for easier access to the U.S.-based video streaming service. Netflix is an unlikely partner for Bell TV, a division of phone giant BCE Inc. that a year ago launched its own subscription VOD service, CraveTV, to fend off competition from the U.S.-based video streaming giant.
The agreement underlines Netflix's popularity north of the border. The U.S. streamer has signed up around 38 percent of English-speaking Canadian TV viewers as subscribers since launching in the country in late 2010, convincing Bell TV to now offer Netflix Canada as a viewing option.
"Bell is very excited to add the tremendous Netflix catalog of on-demand and original content to Fibe and FibreOP TV — and like all our TV features, we've made it incredibly easy to use," Rizwan Jamal, president of Bell Residential Services, said in a statement.
Netflix Canada earlier this year became available via Telus' Optik TV set-top boxes in western Canada. Netflix Canada won't be available free to Fibe TV subscribers. Users will still need a separate Netflix subscription, and then will only have to press an app on their Fibe TV remote to access Netflix Canada.
Dish Network is the biggest U.S. carrier to integrate Netflix, with major cable operators so far being reluctant to give the Internet streaming giant access to their subscribers.
Dec. 16 2:05 p.m. Updated to indicate Netflix earlier launched on Telus' Optik TV network in western Canada.