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Verizon intros Flex View

Wed, 11/10/2010 - 7:30am
Brian Santo

Verizon has introduced a new means of allowing FiOS TV customers to manage their own content across multiple screens.

Flex View is a combination of a multi-screen streaming service and a menu system that allows subscribers to tell Verizon what services they have and what devices they have.

Initially, it will mostly provide on-demand video, but by next year, it will handle different media types, including music, user-generated video and photos.

The new feature is now available to most FiOS subscribers and will be in all FiOS markets by the end of the month, the company said.

The company is offering 1,400 movie titles, a number the company expects to grow to more than 2,000 titles by year-end.

The company will place a "Flex View" logo on content that can be streamed in this manner. The word "multi-screen" means nothing to customers, noted Verizon's product development manager of video services, Joe Ambeault, during his keynote at the TelcoTV show today, "so we had to invent a brand."

Flex View not only streams, but it also lets users download titles to computers and smartphones so they can watch even when there is no Internet connection available.

Next year, users will be able to access their personal content and specify what devices they have – be it an iPad, an Android phone or a Flip cam – and then specify what content they want to go where.

After that, Verizon will manage the content, for example, automatically allowing VOD streams to the iPad, or automatically uploading Flip cam video to YouTube, or automatically uploading photos on their subscribers' phones to Flickr.

FiOS TV customers can find Flex View videos in the Interactive Media Guide under "Video on Demand" or by pressing the "On Demand" button on the FiOS TV remote control. They also can access Flex View online through their personal computers by downloading a free software application called Media Manager, which some customers have been using for some time already.

In addition, customers can access Flex View via a mobile device, Verizon said. The Flex View mobile application – called "Media Manager Mobile" – is available for download.

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