The deal marks the first time Viacom channels have been offered as live internet TV channels via a VOD service. Terms of the agreement were not revealed, but such a significant deal would not have come cheap.
At least 22 Viacom channels will be on the service at launch as a result. These are BET, CMT, Comedy Central, MTV, MTV2, Nickelodeon, Nick Jr., Nicktoons, Spike, TV Land and VH1, BET Gospel, Centric, Logo, CMT Pure Country, MTV Hits, MTV James, mtvU, Palladia, TeenNick, Vh1 Classic and Vh1 Soul.
Sony’s service will also get hundreds of hours of TV Everywhere programming from the likes of Nick, MTV, Comedy Central and BET available via Viacom websites and apps; and Viacom’s full VOD offering.
“Viacom always strives to create transformational opportunities that combine consumer value and technological innovation,” said Philippe Dauman, president and CEO, Viacom. “Given our young, tech-savvy audiences, our networks are essential for any new distribution platform, and we’re excited to be among the many programmers that will help power Sony’s new service and advance a new era for television.”
Sony has been planning the cloud service for some time, though details remain scarce. The Viacom deal was first mooted in US trades last year. Further announcements from Sony will come in the “near future”, the firm said.
“Our new cloud-based TV service will combine the live TV content people love most about cable with the dynamic experience they have come to expect from our network,” said Andrew House, group executive, network entertainment business, Sony.
“Viacom’s award-winning networks are a perfect match for our new service, ensuring that our customers will be able to access the shows they love on their favorite devices, when and how they choose.”
Sony claims there are more than 75 million internet-connected Sony devices in US homes.