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Sony Makes Deal with Viacom for Online Pay TV: WSJ

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The race for pay TV 2.0 is underway. As was reported by the Wall Street Journal and other publications, Sony and Viacom have come to an early deal that will let Sony stream Viacom channels -- which include MTV, Comedy Central, and Nickelodeon -- in its upcoming online pay TV service. Sony will likely launch the service on PlayStation consoles and Sony Bravia TVs early next year.

Intel and Apple are also in the race to create streaming pay TV services. With many homes cutting the cord and many young adults preferring to avoid large monthly cable or satellite bills, streamed services that offered lower-priced channel bundles or a la carte channel selection as well as mobile access and cloud DVRs could take off with connected viewers.

The Sony/Viacom arrangement is a milestone, since content companies have been reluctant to explore avenues outside cable and satellite, preferring to protect the lucrative current model. This is a sign that major studios are willing to get on board with pay TV 2.0.

The Wall Street Journal notes that Sony and Intel will offer appealing graphic interfaces, according to people who have seem them. Sony will offer viewers targeted recommendations, some of which will be chosen by the studios.

Streaming Media contacted a Sony representative, who said the company doesn't comment on articles based on rumors.

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