Viacom gets into mobile video with Play Plex


Michelle Clancy

| 09 September 2015

Viacom has announced the launch of Viacom Play Plex, a suite of mobile TV apps to be distributed by pay-TV and other network operators.

Starting in the fourth quarter of 2015, the Viacom Play Plex apps will be available to launch in all 180 international territories in which Viacom owns and operates TV channels. There will be a separate mobile Play app for each of Viacom's major international TV channel brands Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, Paramount Channel, Spike and BET offering video-on-demand (VOD) access to a range of current and library content, as well as a live, local linear stream of the relevant channel, and other content including games for Nick Play.

Viacom is exploring a number of different distribution options for Viacom Play Plex, with the suite of second-screen apps being offered on both a collective and standalone basis to existing pay-TV partners in every territory to integrate into their TV everywhere services where available.

A number of pay-TV providers have already signed deals with Viacom to offer subscribers authenticated access to the Nick app, including NOS in Portugal, while Viacom is collaborating with a number of other providers on upcoming launches including Foxtel in Australia and OSN in the Middle East and North Africa region. The Nick app, which has been rolled out in five international markets since 2013, is being updated and rebranded as Nick Play internationally to become part of Viacom Play Plex.

That said, Viacom will also look for new distribution partners for the Viacom Play Plex apps, including mobile network operators.

"Viacom Play Plex offers us maximum flexibility in distributing our content as the way viewers consume their favourite TV shows continues to evolve," said Bob Bakish, president and CEO at Viacom International Media Networks. "These apps are designed to complement our linear pay-TV channels and to allow our existing distribution partners to deepen and improve the entertainment experience they offer their subscribers. But, Viacom Play Plex also opens up new distribution opportunities for us, particularly in the fast-growing mobile TV sector, and, ultimately, positions us to succeed in a world of more personalised entertainment services and greater consumer choice."

Bakish added: "Viacom Play Plex allows viewers across the globe to watch the TV shows they love from their favourite Viacom brands anytime and anywhere. We believe no other international entertainment company is offering this type of innovation at this scale, serving every major demographic in every major TV market."