NFB launches iPhone application

Enabling free, full viewing of video library content

TORONTO -- The National Film Board of Canada is looking to animate the iPhone.

Canada's publicly-funded filmmaker has launched an iPhone application to stream its documentaries, cartoons and trailers just as the iconic Apple smartphone is set to be carried by local phone giants Bell Canada and Telus Corp.

The NFB's mobile application will enable free, full viewing of hundreds of streamed content from its video library, including new and classic Oscar-winning animation, or pre-loading for later viewing without a network connection.

As the NFB joins other Canadian producers in shifting to digital platforms, Rogers Communications, the country's largest mobile and cable TV provider, is about to lose its exclusive deal with Apple to market the iPhone to Canadians.

Bell Canada and Telus, Canada's two-biggest phone companies, will start selling the iPhone in November after they upgraded their networks and negotiated their own contracts with Apple.

Canada currently has a smartphone penetration of 20%, indicating considerable upside in demand for the Apple iPhone for all three mobile phone giants.

Shares in Apple earlier this week jumped on news of record iPhone sales.