UK broadcaster ITV has replaced both ITV Player and ITV.com with a new destination for catch-up content and online services.
Called ITV Hub, the new service is available now online and live streaming of the ITV family of channels are "at the heart of the new service".
ITV claims that over 30 per cent of its online usage across PC and mobile comes from viewers watching live streams rather than catch-up content, so it is focusing more on that aspect. It's also something the BBC has pushed further to the forefront on iPlayer in the last year, with many of its apps now able to start a live TV show from the beginning if you switch over too late.
The new service is also now available on Amazon's Fire TV and Fire TV Stick streaming devices for the first time. It is part of Freeview Play too.
It incorporates live streams and catch-up material from all ITV's channels, including ITV, ITV 2, ITV 3 and CITV. It doesn't seem that the bitrates and picture quality improved over the digital content previously available on ITV Player though. Nor has ITV started to offer high definition video.
You do get a nice new user interface however, and while there are still adverts before programmes, content starts quickly.
"With over 11 million registered users and 726 million long form requests last year alone, our VOD service has come of age, with live TV right at the core of our proposition," said Paul Kanareck, ITV's director of online on the original announcement of the streamlined service.
"Our product and content offering has improved dramatically.""
ITV Hub is also be the name for a completely new desktop PC service and it is expected that all apps and channels for other platforms will be rebranded too.