The UK’s biggest two broadcasters have signed a deal to launch a rival to online streaming service Netflix later this year.
ITV and the BBC are teaming up to launch BritBox, which will cost £5.99 a month and allow streaming across multiple screens and devices in HD.
By comparison Netflix, which yesterday reported a huge slowdown in customer acquisition, costs £11.99 for its similar premium tariff after a recent £2 price hike.
The standard Netflix tariff, which allows streaming to two devices at the same time, rose from £7.99 to £8.99 while the basic subscription costs users £5.99.
BritBox will be home to the largest collection of British boxsets, according to a statement ITV posted on the London Stock Exchange, while a broad range of exclusive original series will be commissioned for the service.
The likes of Love Island, Famalam, Cleaning Up and Gentleman Jack will be hosted on its catch-up service, which will be co-branded by ITV and the BBC.
“The agreement to launch BritBox is a milestone moment,” said ITV CEO Carolyn McCall.
“Subscription video on demand is increasingly popular with consumers who love being able to watch what they want when they want to watch it. They are also happy to pay for this ease of access to quality content and so BritBox is tapping into this, and a new revenue stream for UK public service broadcasters.
“ITV and BBC have made, and continue to make, the programmes that both reflect and shape British culture and creativity. We now look forward to working together to launch the largest collection of British boxsets ever – bringing the very best in past, present and future British programming and award-winning content to viewers all in one place.
“We are already working together on BritBox in the US and Canada and this is proving to be very successful, exceeding its targets.
“We are committed to making BritBox UK a great success. Discussions continue with other content and distribution partners and we are looking forward to making further announcements in the coming months.”
BBC director general Tony Hall said: “We have a world-beating TV industry with outstanding content. The BBC and ITV are at the centre of that.
“Together, we have been responsible for delivering the majority of “must see” moments on British TV over the last decade. That “must see” content will now be on BritBox.
“But this service isn’t just about the past. I am really excited about the new shows it will commission. With a remit to be daring and different, many future classics will be commissioned and live on BritBox for the future.
“These are exciting times for people who love quality TV. Importantly, these shows will be truly British, showcasing our culture and telling distinctive stories. It’s what makes real British TV so special.”