Thu, Sep 27, 2012 - Page 5 News List

Fox International Channels prepares to launch nation’s first TV cloud service

Staff writer, with CNA

Fox International Channels (FIC) plans to launch a cloud service for its subscribers in Taiwan by early next year that will allow users to watch FIC shows at their convenience.

The cloud service, called “Fox Play,” will store movies, documentaries and television series broadcast by FIC for up to one month so that subscribers can download the shows via apps on their laptops, cellphones or other electronic devices, Mel Chen, senior vice president at FIC’s Taiwan office, said on Tuesday.

So far, the broadcaster has reached agreements with the providers of two local platforms, one of which is Chunghwa Telecom’s multimedia-on-demand (MOD), to extend the cloud service to their subscribers, he said.

He said the service will be launched either at the end of this year or at the beginning of next year.

FIC will become the first digital television channel operator in Taiwan to provide this type of service, FIC’s senior executive publicist Jenny Pan said.

Although FIC is a foreign operator, “we see ourselves as a local business,” said Ward Platt, president of FIC’s Asia-Pacific and Middle East division.

The network also tries to live up to “the very high standards set by local channels,” he added.

Chen said the network, which extends to 35 countries, uses its international experience to get an idea of what its Taiwanese and global viewers like to watch.

Drawing on its experience in broadcasting the popular reality cooking show MasterChef Australia and US musical comedy-drama series Glee, FIC is working on producing a cooking show and a musical drama set in Taiwan, he said.

The network said it holds a 10 percent share of Taiwan’s paid TV viewership market and offers 24 channels to its viewers, 15 of which are high-definition.

In the Taiwanese market, FIC has a higher percentage of viewers in the 15-year-old to 44-year-old age group than some local channel operators, which is an advantage because people in that age bracket have stronger consumption, Chen said.

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