New AOL Service Is Old Television
Dubbed “In2TV,” the service will pair AOL and Warner Bros in delivering vintage television shows over the Internet to viewers, on an ad-supported basis.
Don’t try pirating old episodes of “Babylon 5” or “Kung Fu” though. AOL will use a number of technology solutions to keep track of shows being viewed. The Wall Street Journal noted that AOL will be able to pinpoint homes that use In2TV.
When the service launches in January, it will offer a varying choice of episodes each month. Shows won’t be continuously available via In2TV, as the initiative could drive sales of DVDs of old series, the New York Times said in a separate report.
The service monetizes the programming by placing four 15-second commercials in each episode. Users will not be able to skip past them. About 300 shows form the pool for available content.
Of those 300 shows, about 100 will be used in the first year. 300 episodes per month out of the 14,000 Warner Bros has available from its pool will be available on In2TV. The Journal said Warner Bros had to clear a number of copyrights for the project, and in some cases original music has been replaced to avoid licensing fees.
One feature of In2TV makes programs available in full or split screen. In split screen mode, the show plays on one side, while the other will have added content like games and trivia about the show.
David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business. Email him here.