Verizon Wireless to Shut Down Video-Subscription Service

Carrier Steering Subscribers Toward Viewdini Service for 4G Devices

Verizon Wireless will discontinue its video-subscription service, which used to be called VCast Video, on Dec. 15, and will instead push customers toward the Viewdini portal for 4G wireless devices that provides access to services including Comcast’s Xfinity On Demand and Netflix.

The carrier has offered the service, launched as VCast Video in 2005 then renamed Verizon Video last year, for $3 per day or $10 per month with unlimited usage -- although all video usage counts toward subscribers’ wireless data plans.

The subscription video service’s lineup has provided more than 100 live channels and 250-plus full episode shows and events each month. Content partners have included A+E Networks, CBS, Comedy Central, Discovery, Fox, Lifetime, MTV, NBC and Nickelodeon.

Verizon Wireless will continue to offer the $5 monthly NFL Mobile service, which includes access to Sunday, Monday and Thursday night games mobile. The carrier’s exclusive mobile TV rights are part of a $720 million, four-year sponsorship pact that kicked off with the 2010-11 season.

Verizon Wireless’s move to shut down the video service was reported Monday by AllThingsD. Last month the carrier said it will shut down Verizon App Store at the beginning of 2013.

“To better serve the demands of consumers, on December 15, 2012, Verizon Video will be Shut Down from use,” a notice posted on the company’s says. “This will allow us to focus on bringing you the best video experience in wireless. With more choices and even more content, we introduce VIEWDINI, a new video service for your 4G Android/Apple device.”

At the 2012 Cable Show in May, Verizon Wireless launched the free Viewdini video portal, which is designed to spur usage of the company’s nationwide 4G network. The Viewdini apps and mobile site, powered by CBS Interactive's, provide links to services including Comcast Xfinity, Sony’s Crackle, Hulu Plus, mSpot and Netflix.