Lionsgate-backed cable channel Starz is rolling out a direct-to-consumer app in five countries, including the UK and France.
The Starzplay app is also launching in Brazil, Germany and Mexico, and plans are in place to launch in 20 additional countries next year.
To date, Starzplay has found distribution via platforms such as Apple TV and Amazon Prime Video and various telco partners. For example, the platform is currently available in Europe and Latin America on Apple TV; in France, Germany, Mexico and the UK on Amazon; and in Spain on Orange and Vodafone.
This next evolution sees Starzplay available as a standalone service, priced at $5 per month.
The app allows up to four users to watch simultaneously and access offline downloads of select shows and films. It is available through iPhone and iPad as well as on a wide range of Android-supported devices.
Currently, Starz subscribers from Totalplay can authenticate and stream content using the app. Other select international cable, satellite and telco partners will also soon be able to authenticate into the app.
Superna Kalle, EVP of international digital networks for Starz, told TBI earlier this year that a direct-to-consumer app informs a holistic distribution strategy for the business.
“Our strategy is to think three-prong in that we have the direct-to-consumer app coming in to the market; we’ve got local distributors like a Vodafone or Orange; and then we have these bigger global partners in Apple and Amazon,” she said at the time.
Starz CEO Jeffrey A. Hirsch said: “Starz has experienced great success with the Starz app domestically, remaining ahead of the streaming curve with more than 5.6 million OTT customers to date, and that number continues to climb.
“Expanding our direct-to-consumer product into the global arena with the launch of the Starzplay app gives subscribers seamless entry to our platform and premium content on their device of choice, while also providing us with access to key consumer data insights as we continue to position ourselves for success in the evolving content ecosystem.”