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Charter, Disney renew distribution agreement, add TV Everywhere services

Wed, 01/02/2013 - 3:03pm
Mike Robuck

On Monday, Charter Communications and The Walt Disney Co. announced a long-term distribution agreement that included multi-screen options and the addition of The Longhorn Network in some areas of Charter’s footprint.

The renewal agreement will mix in Disney video content, such as Disney’s Watch products, ESPN Goal Line and ESPN Buzzer Beater, across various devices to authenticated Charter subscribers of those channels. The TV Everywhere elements of the deal will add Disney content on computers, smartphones, tablets, gaming consoles and Internet-enabled televisions for Charter’s customers.

The Disney offerings will give Charter customers more opportunities to access live and video-on-demand content, both in-home and out-of-home.

Launch of content across the new distribution platforms is planned to begin in the first half of this year. As part of the new multi-year deal, The Longhorn Network will launch in Texas, Louisiana and Virginia systems by football season in the fall.

In total, approximately 70 services were covered by the new agreement, including: ABC, ABC Family, Disney Channel, Disney Junior, Disney XD, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN Deportes, ESPNEWS, ESPN Classic, ESPN Goal Line, ESPN Buzzer Beater, ESPN 3D, ESPN GamePlan, ESPN Full Court, ESPN3 and The Longhorn Network; retransmission consent for WABC-TV, KABC-TV, WLS-TV, KGO-TV, KTRK-TV, WTVD-TV and KFSN-TV; as well as more than 10 high-definition networks.

Charter customers will receive broad access to existing authenticated products, such as Watch Disney Channel, Watch Disney XD and Watch Disney Junior; the to-be-launched Watch ABC and Watch ABC Family services; and WatchESPN (ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN3, ESPNU, ESPN Goal Line and ESPN Buzzer Beater).

"This agreement enables us to offer our customers additional value, choice and convenience," said Allan Singer, Charter's senior vice president of programming. "More and more content is being enjoyed on tablets and other Internet-connected devices, and today's viewers are sharing their TV experiences in new ways. Our agreement with Disney enables more robust ways to enjoy and socialize TV."

Last year, Disney reached similar deals with Comcast, Cox Communications, Cablevision and Midcontinent Communications.

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