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    MTV bolsters mobile content strategy with launch of international OTT apps and MNO partnerships

    MTV is to give mobile network operators on-demand access to its extensive international content library and its global music expertise through the launch of international over-the-top (OTT) apps, MTV Play and MTV Trax.

    The new video and digital music apps will be offered to operators as part of exclusive brand licensing agreements, designed to transform operator services aimed at the burgeoning millennial market; the biggest consumers of OTT content and services via mobile.

    More than two-fifths (41%) of 16 to 24-year-olds regularly watch TV shows on smartphone, according to recent research by MTV’s international parent company, Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN). Music streaming services are also very popular among younger mobile users – in fact mobile handsets are the preferred music listening device for 16 to 24-year-olds, while one in ten (11%) under-35s pay to stream music online.

    “MTV is one of the hottest entertainment brands in the minds of 16 to 24-year-old mobile users, with the majority of online engagement with the MTV brand now coming through mobile devices,” commented Bob Bakish, ‎President and CEO of VIMN. “Today’s launch of the MTV Play and MTV Trax apps offers operators an enormous opportunity to differentiate themselves and reward consumer loyalty by offering greater value through premium branded content and services targeting young customers who aren’t currently subscribing to pay TV.”

    The MTV Play service has been developed in partnership with innovative multi-screen platform developer Vigour. The application, which is compatible with all common operating systems, enables consumers to ‘flick’ content from their smartphone to other connected screens, such as a tablet or smart TV, using nothing more than an internet connection.

    Bakish added: “In partnership with Vigour, we’ve created an ‘industry-first’ multiscreen experience that makes our content available on any device, either through apps on all major platforms or simply through the browser. MTV Play also allows viewers to connect multiple screens to each other, making it incredibly easy to discover, control or share our content at home or on the go.”

    Launching on 5th March with mobile network partners in Germany, Switzerland and Romania, subscribers to MTV Mobile branded tariffs with these operators will get free access to MTV Play, while other consumers in those countries will be able to directly access the same content for €2.99 per month or €29.99 per annum. Subscribers will get access to a library of more than 1,500 hours of MTV’s best known and most popular TV content, as well as a preview episode of new series, such as Catfish (season 4) in advance of their linear TV transmission.

    For network operators looking to diversify, MTV Play allows them to move into multiplatform solutions, whilst maintaining mobile as the central hub for their services. The app, backed by Vigour’s industry-first multi-screen technology, delivers a unique proposition for operators, raising their brand profile as the network choice for the millennial demographic.

    VIMN is also launching an OTT, mobile digital music service, MTV Trax, tailored for pre-pay customers and casual music fans who may be put off by the higher price tariffs and complexity of ‘all you can eat’ streaming services. The MTV Trax app offers consumers a music experience curated by MTV, featuring 100 of the hottest music tracks downloaded to their smartphone and updated daily. Powered by the MusicQubed platform, the MTV Trax app gives consumers the ability to access tracks offline, meaning that fans can listen to music from any location.

    MTV Trax is being launched as a direct-to-consumer subscription service in the UK on 3rd March, available through the App Store, Google Play or Windows Phone Store, following a successful trial. It is also due to launch in New Zealand, in partnership with a leading network operator.

    Bakish added: “MTV Trax is a new concept in premium digital music services – a ‘play-as-you-go’ offering for casual music fans who want music on their mobile, but in an easy, flexible and low-risk way. It’s easy for the end user, because MTV’s experts curate all the music, and it’s easy for mobile network operators, allowing them to offer a premium branded entertainment product to their pre-pay customers with flexible and affordable pricing.”

    For 80% of 16 to 25-year-olds, listening to music is a digital experience on mobile devices. This service will not only allow carriers to deliver a service which is in-demand amongst millennials and raise average revenue per user (ARPU), but also to add value by providing access to MTV branded and curated content.

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