Verizon Agrees to Acquire Intel's 'OnCue' Web TV Service

A Chance to Expand Outside Verizon's Wired Footprint

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Verizon Communications, the second-largest U.S. communications company, has agreed to acquire Intel Corp.'s pay-TV startup to extend its offerings of internet-based TV services.

Credit: Athletics

The acquisition of Intel Media, along with its about 350 employees, will accelerate the availability of next-generation video services, New York-based Verizon and Santa Clara, Calif.-based Intel said in a joint statement today. Financial details weren't disclosed.

Intel, which developed the service called OnCue, began looking for a buyer last year rather than invest in the programming and bring it to market on its own. The takeover could shake up pay TV, by bringing more competition to cable companies that dominate territories, as well as satellite companies with wide coverage that lack the interactive capability of the Web.

OnCue is designed to provide pay-TV programming over any high-speed internet connection, making it a threat to cable-TV services that deliver shows over dedicated lines restricted by territory. Intel's system includes servers, set-top boxes and applications that can stream content to TVs, phones and tablets.

The technology would allow Verizon to expand TV service outside of its wired footprint, if it can secure deals with cable programmers to do so.

As part of the deal, Verizon will purchase intellectual property rights and other assets related to the OnCue platform, the companies said. Intel Media's management team will stay.

~ Bloomberg News ~

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