Google could be about to enter the pay-per-view market via YouTube according to reports in the FT.
The newspaper says Google, who could go live with the service as early as before the end of the year, is already in negotiations with Hollywood’s leading movie studios.
"Google has been pitching to the studios on the international appeal of a streaming, on-demand movie service pegged to the world’s most popular search engine and YouTube, according to several people with knowledge of the situation," reports the FT.
“Google and YouTube are a global phenomenon with a hell of a lot of eyeballs – more than any cable or satellite service,” said one executive with knowledge of the plans. “They’ve talked about how many people they could steer to this . . . it’s a huge number.”
However what's more likely, is that the company will use the service to help bolster the appeal of its Google TV offering launching soon and use it to take on Apple's Apple TV offering, Hulu and Netflix as the pay-per-view market intensifies.
Sony has already announced, as part of its partnership deal with Google, that it will have its first internet TV out in time for Christmas in the US. According to the company, Sony will be the world’s first TV to incorporate the "Google TV" platform later this year.
Through an easy-to-use interface, consumers will be able to search and access content from their TVs and across the Internet - a rich internet experience on consumers’ TVs says the company.
“Sony Internet TV” is scheduled to first launch in the US the autumn of 2010 with the lineup featuring both a standalone TV model and set top box-type unit incorporating a Blu-ray disc drive.
In the UK Sony already offers Lovefilm via its BRAVIA televisions.