The BBC said toward the end of 2015 that it would launch a video streaming service exclusively for the US. Today, the BBC has confirmed the service will launch in early 2017, but in collaboration with ITV as well.

The two broadcasters have been developing the service since March 2016, and will be entirely ad-free - the ITV Hub in the UK currently includes adverts for catch-up programmes - but pricing information will be revealed when it launches in the first quarter of 2017.

US subscribers will be able to watch a variety of content from both broadcasters, including Silent Witness, Eastenders and Emmerdale. The service will also have a "now" category, that will stream shows in the US 24 hours after they've been broadcast in the UK. It's a similar set up to how we get Game of Thrones here in the UK, 24 hours after it broadcasts on HBO in the US.

The BBC and ITV will also present US subscribers with some of their more classic content, including Fawlty Towers, Keeping Up Appearances and Pride and Prejudice. Let's just hope subscribers will understand the classic British humour of John Cleese.

There are plans in place to make the service available on a more global scale, including in the UK, following the US launch. If and when it does launch in the UK, it won't replace the already established BBC iPlayer or ITV Hub, but will instead act as a subscription service for box-set content of shows that have gone beyond the regular 30 day catch-up period window.

Although Americans already have access to popular BBC content through BBC America's digital network, which is a joint venture with AMC Networks, the new offering will be delivered over the internet and without any involvement from a US network operator.

The BBC also offers some of its older content through Netflix in the US and the UK, but it's not clear whether this deal will continue now the Beeb has its own subscription arm.

Sections BBC TV