NBC Universal preps global VOD offer


LONDON -- NBC Universal is poised to launch a major new global, subscription-based video-on-demand service within a year, NBC Universal international TV head Belinda Menendez said Thursday.

The company is "aggressively marketing" the TV Box service in Europe and Asia, and expects to close distribution deals in "between five and 10 markets" imminently, she said.

TV Box service will offer current and classic NBC Uni series and its content will be regularly refreshed to optimize the service.

The division aims to serve as a stand-alone pay service in some markets, while in others, it will be made available to customers paying for top-tier channel bundles.

For key shows like sci-fi drama "Heroes," NBC Uni will consider offering the programs as a premium-priced on-off downloads ahead of the broadcast window.

"TV Box is the next step in the evolution of our branded on-demand product offering, it's the television version of PictureBox (subscription movie-on-demand service)," Menendez said.

NBC's PictureBox service signed a distribution deal with British broadband platform BT Vision.

The premium-priced, movies-on-demand service will launch May 5, promising recent films, many of which have not yet aired on British network television.