Lionsgate, Paramount and MGM have all come together to
a new TV network called Epix that will show their own recent films in HD before they’re released on DVD. They’re also bringing this channel online with an on-demand website that will offer HD streaming of the very same films. And, best of all, it won’t have any advertising and won’t show up on your cable bill.
Epix will be bundled directly into cable packages, and according to their current business model, won’t show up as a separate charge on your bill. If Epix can convince enough cable operators to sign on (they haven’t announced any partners yet), they will be able to gain a competitive edge over pay-TV channels that have a monthly fee.
The best part of it all is the site, epixhd.com . The films will stream in 720p, all for free. The video will be offered through Flash and is multi-bitrate enabled. The player will check your available bandwidth every ten seconds to see if a larger or smaller stream is required. Epix is currently working off of six different encodings for each film, ranging from cell phone quality (500Kbps) all the way to full HD.
But, there’s reportedly a catch (surprise, surprise). In order to use the website, you’ll need to be signed up with an ISP’s Internet and cable. This is primarily because Epix is looking to install caching servers directly in the data centers of ISPs that partner with them.
Image Credit: Epix