ITV Web portal off to fast start

Downloads skyrocket after relaunch

LONDON -- It might have been later than its rivals to the broadband game, but ITV revealed Friday that it has seen a fourfold increase in video downloads from since the portal relaunched in August.

ITV said and have registered 69 million video views since August, with viewing rates growing 21% month to month.

Video views for alone have grown 51% each month since the relaunch. The high point was a record 1.1 million downloads for the finale of entertainment show "Britain's Got Talent," while other top performers included regular soaps "Coronation Street" and "Emmerdale" and comedy show "Benidorm."

ITV's biggest rival, the BBC, said it has recorded more than 75 million downloads in the first four months of the year and is logging about 21 million views each month. Britain's leading terrestrial players the BBC, ITV and Channel 4 plan the launch of combined video download platform Kangaroo later this year. The new platform will offer a mix of free and paid-for content from each broadcaster as well as a limited amount of material from other content owners.