ITV has announced it will be launching an integrated advertising and subscription funded TV streaming platform later this year, as part of plans to shift to a more digital-first strategy.
ITVX will enable viewers to watch content for free with advertising, or pay a subscription to watch ad-free – much like how streaming services such as Spotify work. And, as part of ITV’s adoption of a digital-first windowing strategy, the TV network will premiere most of its new content on ITVX months before broadcasting on its linear channels.
Subscribers to ITVX will also receive the added benefit of being able to access BritBox as part of their subscription, providing viewers with access to UK series from the BBC, Channel 4, and Channel 5 as well.
“The digital acceleration we are announcing today builds on everything we have achieved in phase one of our More Than TV strategy. ITVX will be a free service supported by adverts, with a compelling subscription proposition. This is fantastic for viewers – it will provide a simplified and seamless experience with thousands of hours of free content made up of both library and original exclusive content. The subscription tier will provide a premium offering and includes all of the content ad-free as well as BritBox and future SVOD content partners,” said Carolyn McCall, ITV’s Chief Executive.
“We are supercharging our streaming business, fundamentally shifting our focus to think digital first, as well as optimising our broadcast channels, by continuing to attract unrivalled mass audiences. In doing so, we are responding to changing viewing habits, but also the evolving needs from our advertisers. This will enable ITV to continue to be both commercial viewers and advertisers’ first choice.”
For now, ITV Hub will continue to provide free streaming, and ITV will be scaling up the amount of content available on the service until it’s replaced by ITVX.