Shaw unveils new mobile TV service
September 21, 2012 | Russ Martin | Comments
Shaw launched a new digital offering for its cable subscribers yesterday that lets viewers stream shows such as True Blood and Game of Thrones on mobile devices.
Shaw launched this new service, Shaw Go, with a Movie Central app available to Movie Central subscribers.
Paul Burns, Shaw’s vice-president of online experience, said the service is a response to the consumer demand for content on multiple devices.
“Customer expectations are very clear – consumers want content on their devices,” he said. “It’s a bring-your-own-internet mentality.”
Bell offers 26 live channels to its mobile subscribers, while Rogers streams live sports and news through a mobile app.
According to Burns, the Movie Central app is the first in a series of branded channel apps the company plans to roll out over the next two years. Eventually, he said, Shaw sees its entire portfolio available on the go. “It’s a channel-led strategy for ‘TV everywhere,’” he said. “We want to embrace the brand equity that already exists.”
The Movie Central app was designed exclusively for Apple product users, but Burns said Shaw intends to release apps in the future for multiple operating systems. Shaw Go services are available only to existing Shaw subscribers, but Burns said the company is open to exploring streaming services that are not bundled with traditional cable.
“The impetus for ‘TV everywhere’ is that we start with your TV or satellite subscription,” Burns said. “At the moment customers cannot get it as a stand-alone product.”
As the media landscape changes, however, he said Shaw may explore other options. “We’ve obviously seen how Netflix has arranged their business model,” he said. “I don’t know we’d ever rule out a direct-to-consumer product.”
“We’re sure there is a demand for a stand-alone [service],” he said. “We will keep a close eye on it.”