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Verizon has launched its much-anticipated video streaming app go90 with a suite of exclusive programming from partners including AwesomenessTV, NFL and Comedy Central.
Go90 — which refers to flipping the orientation of your phone from vertical to horizontal to better view a video — is a free, ad-supported app that Verizon is hoping will target young mobile phone users, regardless of their service provider. The service will offer up a mix of short-form digital content alongside TV shows and live events including sports and concerts.
At launch, go90 will have more than 8,000 titles from digital media partners including Vice News, HuffPost Live, Machinima, Maker Studios and AOL. Traditional media partners including Comedy Central, MTV and the NFL also have agreed to license some content, with go90 boasting that it will carry “15 of the 30 most viewed network shows.” The service also has struck deals for 35 exclusive series and has plans to double its original content by the end of the year. AwesomenessTV, for example, is producing a daily live show called Top Five Live hosted by Hunter March, and Michelle Phan‘s Icon Network plans to stream three beauty and lifestyle shows exclusively on the app. Eventually, go90 will also stream live college football and basketball games.
“Brilliant coders and engineers and awesome content partners have invested an incredible amount of work and have taken care to create a video experience that until now has been missing for millennial and Gen Z viewers,” said go90 architect Brian Angliolet. “Go90 bridges the content divide between traditional and digital distributors, along with established and emerging creators.”
Verizon first revealed plans for a then-unnamed go90 in September last year and said it was targeting an early 2015 launch. In the meantime, the telecom giant has faced an influx of competition in the streaming space. Dish went on to launch Sling TV, a $20-a-month subscription that offers live television programming from partners including ESPN and Food Network alongside short-form content from Maker Studios. Comcast has also entered the space with Watchable, a free, ad-supported app similar to go90 that launched in beta testing on Sept. 29.
Go90 had been available for testing, but Thursday’s news signals its wide launch for iOS and Android devices.
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