Intel Corp. is in talks to sell all or part of Intel Media, the unit that’s developing an over-the- top video subscription service, to Verizon Communications, a source said, confirming media reports that emerged last week.
Website AllThingsD characterized the talks as being in “advanced negotiations,” but one source familiar with those talks told Multichannel News that a deal does not appear to be imminent. Intel Media and Verizon both declined to comment.
Sources confirmed last month that Intel Media’s aspiring shot at creating a “virtual” MSO, reportedly to be called OnCue, would face a possible shutdown if it failed to secure enough content deals to create a compelling video service.
Verizon is only one of a growing list of companies said to be in M&A or partnership discussions with Intel Media, including Amazon, Samsung and Netflix. An industry source told Multichannel News that Intel Media has also tried to engage with Liberty Media about a partnership, but that Liberty had shown no interest in pursuing it.
Colin Dixon, chief analyst and founder of nScreen-Media, said Verizon has some sound strategic reasons to pursue Intel Media’s OnCue platform as it seeks a uniform way to deliver services and hasten an IP video transition and a possible “virtual MSO” strategy.
A big question is how easy would it be for Verizon to port the OnCue client to devices such as Roku boxes and smart TVs?