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Roku Lands Epix Channel

17 Aug, 2011 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Move marks collaboration between cable-based pay-TV platform and over-the-top carrier for TV Everywhere offering

Streaming media player manufacturer Roku has incorporated the Epix pay-TV channel that offers movies and TV programming from Paramount, Lionsgate and MGM to authenticated viewers.

Epix, which is co-owned by the aforementioned studios, offers original and repurposed movies and TV shows to subscribers via the Internet and cable, including Charter, Cox, Dish Network, Mediacom, Suddenlink and Verizon FiOS.

Recent Epix movie offerings include Iron Man 2 and Hot Tub Time Machine.

By partnering with Roku, Epix essentially is working with a so-called cord-cutting service, which many observers believe is undermining cable’s video subscriber base. Indeed, Netflix streaming, which Roku helped launch with a branded player in 2008, is considered one of the biggest threats to cable as subscribers look to cheaper sources of entertainment.

In a blog post, Jim Funk, VP of business development with Roku, said the Epix channel is a natural extension of cable and underscores Roku as  complimentary — not a competitor — to cable and satellite TV.

Funk said Roku gives Epix subscribers the ability to watch the pay-TV channel in high-definition on a second TV in another room that may not be hooked up to cable.

“We are providing a new option for our users who subscribe to a cable, satellite or telco provider that offers Epix — increasing the value they get from their Epix subscription and their enjoyment of the Roku player,” Funk wrote. “Most Roku users have a video subscription service from a cable, satellite or a telco provider, and for them Roku is a complimentary solution for video and music entertainment.”

Roku owners who subscribe to the aforementioned cable, satellite and telco services can get a free 14-day trial of Epix at www.epixhd.com. Roku players, which are priced from $59.99, are available at Amazon, Best Buy, Walmart and Fry's.

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