Homevid unit pacts with b'caster on downloads

Warner Bros. Home Video and South Korean broadcaster MBC have pacted to sell permanent digital downloads of films and TV programs in South Korea.

A trial service will bow this year after technological details are worked out. WB wants more partners among local contentmakers and telcos to ensure that content can be viewed on a variety of devices, including mobile phones and portable multimedia players.

Films are expected to be released day-and-date with the local DVD release.

Information on pricing is still to come. Warner and MBC are said to be pushing for a greater percentage of profits to be shared with copyright holders relative to the formulas prevalent in the music download sector.

WB sells permanent downloads in the U.S. via Movielink.

The studio also has joined with Bertelsmann to provide similar services in Germany, Austria and Switzerland and with Free Record to target the Netherlands and Dutch-speaking parts of Belgium.

Tech-savvy South Korea has one of the world’s highest rates of illegal downloading, which is believed to have crippled the local DVD market.

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