Netflix is moving into linear TV by testing out the popularity of a new scheduled channel via its service in France.
The new offering is called Direct and operates like a scheduled network, with an array of programming – including hits such as The Crown, La Case De Papel and Family Business – available at prescribed times.
The service, which started its testing phase yesterday, is at present only accessible to subscribers via the global streamer’s web browser in France. Viewers can, however, continue to watch the programmes on demand as normal should they wish.
Netflix confirmed the test via Twitter, adding that the streamer had chosen France for the experiment because “traditional TV consumption is very popular” there. It added that “many viewers like the idea of programming that avoids having to choose what to watch.”
The streamer described the service as a “real-time flow” that will be the same for all members, allowing viewers “to discover the best French, European and international content available on the service.”
Direct, which uses a grid that runs across the next five days, is to become available to all Netflix customers in France from December.