ReplayTV inks with Starz

Subscribers able to order, store pics

ReplayTV and cabler Starz Encore Group have pacted to develop subscription- and pay-per-view-based video-on-demand services for the digital video recorder maker and other set-top boxes.

The service will enable subscribers of Starz Encore Super Pak, which features seven themed movie channels, the chance to order and store pics using direct broadcast satellite technology and ReplayTV’s built-in hard drives.

Whereas PPV clients pay one fee per pic, video-on-demand subscribers would pay a monthly fee for the option to view any pic Starz Encore makes available through high-speed Internet broadband connections. Market and technology trials are expected to begin later this year.

Because downloads over telephone lines can take several hours, ReplayTV will have to partner with a digital satcaster the way rival TiVo has done with DirecTV. That may soon happen: In a recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, ReplayTV said satcaster EchoStar Communications is one of its newest investors, signaling ReplayTV will soon be built into EchoStar’s next-generation high-end set-top boxes.

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