ITV says it’s on course to launch its new streaming service within the final quarter of the year.
Offering a mix of ad-supported catch-up content, new commissions, third-party acquisitions and streamed channels, ITVX will replace the existing ITV Hub app later this year.
The broadcaster is promising to offer more than 9,000 hours of free content, including the UK’s largest collection of free movies with at least 250 titles available, plus at least one new show every week. It’s also previously committed to debuting some new shows on ITVX months ahead of their broadcast on its linear channels.
Confirmed new commissions include cold war series A Spy Among Friends starring Damian Lewis and Guy Pearce, and the new Russell T Davies drama Nolly about Crossroads star Noele Gordon.
Viewers will be able to pay for an optional ad-free version of the service which will also include access to BritBox UK which ITV now owns outright.
Existing subscribers to BritBox UK and ITV Hub+, the broadcaster’s ad-free catch-up service, will be migrated to the new service’s ‘premium tier’. ITV has yet to announce pricing for the new service but has previously promised to honour existing annual subscriptions for BritBox customers.
ITVX is expected to be available on all major platforms including Freeview Play, Virgin Media and Sky, as well on streaming devices from firms such as Amazon and Apple.
The service is a major plank in ITV’s move to a ‘digital first’ approach which will see complete boxsets made available on the platform as soon as the show’s initial episode receives it’s first linear transmission in a bid to attract “those audiences who do the majority of their viewing on digital services”.