Time Warner Expands VOD Offering


Time Warner Cable’s system serving the Greensboro, N.C., market is expected to raise the curtain Friday on a robust on-demand platform that figures to encompass close to 2,000 titles by mid-2007.

Working with In Demand Networks, the system plans to introduce More Movies on Demand, a virtual video store, to its customer base with an eye toward lighting up a number of other divisions throughout 2007.

Supplementing the recent movie releases numbering upward of 200 that it typically offers to its subscribers on-demand, the new program will “layer on 400 incremental titles” under the Family Movies and Classic Movies headings, according to Bob Benya, senior vice president of on-demand and interactive TV for Time Warner Cable.

Whereas current releases cost $3.95 per film, most of the additional titles will be priced at $1.95, with special themed movies going for 99 cents, as a means to stimulate impulse sales.

Time Warner Cable and In Demand will support the More Movies on Demand launch with a multimedia push, according to Benya and In Demand senior VP of programming Dave Asch.

Beginning in February, Time Warner Greensboro will then add approximately 200 more titles per month through June, lifting its total movies-on-demand inventory to somewhere between 1,800-1,900 films, Benya said.

During the first quarter, he anticipates that other Time Warner divisions will roll out the expanded movies offerings..

Asch said the content aggregator has “spoken with several other operators” about helping them to open their own versions of the virtual video stores, which, he added, can be done in “a very scalable way,” depending on a carrier’s server space.

Asch said In Demand was garnering the additional titles from such studios as Universal Studios, Paramount Pictures, 20th Century Fox, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Lionsgate and Warner Bros. “And we’re in conversations with everybody else,” he added.