Russia’s MTS Licenses Content from Universal, Warner and Sony for its Online Video Service

The deals with the three majors cover several hundred films and TV series.

MOSCOW – Mobile TeleSystems (MTS), Russia’s leading mobile phone operator, has signed agreements with Universal, Warner Bros. and Sony on licensing content for its online video service

“We see the signing of these new contracts with rights holders as another step towards the creation of a civilized digital content market in Russia and we continue to work on satisfying our customers’ needs,” Inna Shalyto, MTS’ director for innovative product development, said in a statement.

The agreement with Universal was signed for a one-year period, and those with Warner and Sony for two years, Irina Osadchaya, MTS’ spokesperson, told The Hollywood Reporter, adding that earlier the company signed similar agreement with Disney and Paramount.

According to Osadchaya, the recent deals with three majors cover “several hundred films and TV series”, but she wouldn’t disclose the value of the deals., which was launched in September 2009, allows users to download films to their computers or mobile phones, including movies that were released on video in Russia very recently.

For instance, a user could watch Todd Phillips’ comedy Due Date, released on DVD on March 3, for 70 roubles ($2.50) or download it as a video file to their computer or mobile phone for 210 roubles ($7.50), which is comparable to the retail price of a DVD.

This week, MTS announced that content of is now also available to users of LG Smart TV through a special button of the TV set’s remote control.