TiVo to add Web-based television programming to DVRs

In a further blurring of the lines between traditional television distribution platforms, TiVo is joining an online video publishing service provider to deliver Web-based programming to its subscriber's DVRs.

However, TiVo's deal with Brightcove, a privately held start-up based in Cambridge, MA, also helps level the playing field between large corporate television distributors and small scale content producers who can now bypass the gatekeepers to the home television set through the Internet.

The partnership will provide a method for video producers using Brightcove's Internet TV services to distribute content to TiVo subscribers. It also opens the possibility of monetizing the distribution through advertising, subscription plans or pay-per-view.

Initially, however, the companies said all Web-based content will be offered for free to TiVo subscribers and may carry advertising within the content.

Under terms of the agreement, Brightcove and TiVo will, beginning in June, gradually phase in a limited number of content partners and new downloading capabilities for the system. Broadband video content from Brightcove will be made available to any TiVo Series2 DVR connected to the Internet. TiVo subscribers will be able to discover this content directly in the TiVo Central content management area on the TiVo box.

Jeremy Allaire, founder and CEO of Brightcove, said the partnership will allow TiVo subscribers to find broadband video content via their TiVo or PC and send that content directly to their TiVo box where they can view it whenever they choose.

Brightcove launched its video publishing service last November. Its technology gives established or small independent producers a way to create online videos and then syndicate them through Brightcove's distribution channels, of which TiVo has become the latest.

The company, which also has a deal with Time Warner to start distributing videos this summer on AOL's Web portal, says it so far has several hundred partners, including MTV's Teen Channel and National Lampoon's TogaTV.com, the Associated Press reported.

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