Virgin Media O2 partners with A+E, Banijay & others for FAST channel suite


UK cabler Virgin Media O2 has partnered with A+E Networks EMEA, All3Media International, Banijay Rights, Blue Ant Media, Extreme International, Fremantle, Little Dot Studios and Tastemade to launch a suite of FAST channels.

The channels will be available to all Virgin TV customers at no extra cost from next month.

The dedicated channels will appear within Virgin Media’s EPG alongside its current linear channel line-up, but with programme schedules based on a single show or theme.

Virgin Media O2 said the introduction of FAST on Virgin TV demonstrates its ambition to enhance its TV offering to meet the evolving viewing habits of its customers and provide a library of streamed content that complements its existing free to air and pay-TV offering.

The channels include Inside Crime (A&E Networks), Mystery TV (A&E Networks), Homes Under The Hammer, (All3Media International), Great British Menu, (All3Media International), Deal Or No Deal USA, (Banijay Rights), Fear Factor, (Banijay Rights), Wipeout Xtra, (Banijay Rights), HauntTV, (Blue Ant Media), NextUp Live Comedy (Extreme International), Baywatch (Fremantle), The Chat Show Channel (Little Dot Studios), Real Wild (Little Dot Studios), History Hit (Little Dot Studios) and Tastemade (Tastemade).

The new channel launches will see Virgin Media work with tech providers Amagi and Magnite, including its video ad server SpringServe, to manage and develop FAST services on Virgin TV, with the opportunity for Virgin Media and its channel partners to monetise FAST through targeted, dynamic advertising.

David Bouchier, chief TV and entertainment officer at Virgin Media O2, said: “We’re enhancing our entertainment offering to give our customers the best of the latest TV innovation – streaming themed channels, otherwise known as FAST channels. Through this launch, we’re reimagining the traditional TV format, making our FAST channels visible in the TV guide alongside all our other pay and free channels.

“The introduction of FAST on our platform extends the high-quality viewing experience available to our customers, providing traditional broadcast with VOD, apps, and now linear streaming services all at their fingertips.”

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