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Dutch Telecom Adds HBO to Pending OTT Video Service

24 Jun, 2015 By: Erik Gruenwedel

HBO, Dutch telecom seek to undermine Netflix's global presence

KPN, a Dutch telecommunications company, June 24 announced it has inked a license agreement with HBO for its pending over-the-top video service, dubbed “Play.”

KPN plans to launch Play in the fall offering on-demand content and live TV for an undisclosed monthly fee and no contract. It will be available to anyone with a broadband connection on Android and iOS mobile apps, and Google Chromecast, regardless of whether they subscribe to other KPN services.

Play will offer Discovery Channel, National Geographic, MTV, Comedy Central, TLC, Disney Channel, Nickelodeon, Discovery ID and HBO, in addition to Dutch broadcasters NPO, SBS and RTL.

Jaap Postma, EVP of consumer markets at KPN, said the telecom remains devoted to the traditional pay-TV, while Play enables it to attract cord-cutters and millennials eschewing the bundled channel ecosystem.

Now KPN has a “real OTT service,” Postma said, adding that live events such as sports and news will continue to underscore linear TV.

The move comes nearly two years after Netflix launched a subscription streaming service in Holland. HBO, which just launched standalone SVOD service HBO Now in the United States, is seeking to undermine Netflix’s global expansion into 200 countries by 2017.

HBO had the largest worldwide subscriber base with nearly 140 million at the end of 2014. Netflix ended the first quarter with 62 million globally.


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