The launch of Britbox, a joint initiative by the BBC and ITV which will bring together the full spectrum of British Tv for the first time; from Only Fools and Horses to Love Island, will also see it team with Channel 4, EE and Film4.
Differentiating itself from its rivals the new services is composed entirely of British box sets including all 627 episodes of classic Doctor Who in addition to every series of Downton Abbey and The Office.
For £5.99 per month, subscribers can access this content in HD on-demand with over a thousand hours of Channel 4 and Film4 material set to be added to its stable from 2020 following agreement of a three-year partnership.
Samsung is the first TV manufacturer to adopt the Britbox platform with both companies committing to a co-marketing partnership which will position the service as a ‘recommended app’ on its smart TV’s, backed by joint promotional activity in the all-important Christmas run-up.
Alex Mahon, CEO at Channel 4 said: “Channel 4 has always showcased distinctive and diverse British content and, in a world of almost unlimited choice, our public service brand values are more important than ever for viewers. The opportunity to collaborate as PSBs on BritBox extends our track record of partnership and will ensure there is a compelling single destination for the very best high quality, home-grown content.”
BT meanwhile will provide access to Britbox across its full range of brands and services with EE serving as an exclusive mobile partner.
Marc Allera, CEO of BT’s consumer division said: “We’re delighted to be partnering with the world’s best streaming providers to give our customers the UK’s best TV experience - offering unrivalled choice and flexibility. This deal with BritBox will add more exciting content to our great range of TV services for customers whether they’re watching at home or on the go.”
Additionally Reemah Sakaan, group director ITV SVOD commented: “BritBox is all about bringing together the best of British creativity and talent in a new digital world. Today’s launch and the announcement of our partnership deals with Channel 4 and BT underline the quality and scale we want the service to embody. It’s wonderful to be bringing such a wealth of brilliant British TV and film to subscribers from today, and I’m looking forward to revealing our exciting, original commissions in the near future.”
Britain’s broadcasters have set aside their historic rivalries in the face of increasingly cut-throat competition from US-based streaming providers such as Netflix and Amazon Prime.