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Go90 to Feature NFL Games, Live Concerts: Report

NFL games and live concerts will be among the video fare offered by Go90, a free, “mobile-first” over-the-top offering from Verizon Communications targeted to millennials that will debut this week, according toThe New York Times.

Go90 is expected to be a free, ad-supported service that offers a blend of live and on-demand content. Though initially developed for mobile devices (the name of the service is about rotating a smartphone 90 degrees to view video in landscape mode), Verizon’s also noodling TV-based streaming strategies, the paper said.

Announced partners for Verizon’s new service include Discovery Communications, Vice Media, Scripps Networks Interactive, ACC Digital Network, Campus Insiders, CBS Sports, ESPN, 120 Sports,  Awesomeness TV, and AOL, which Verizon acquired in June. The New York Times noted that the offering will also feature shows from Comedy Central, NFL Network, Tastemade and Machinima.

Brian Angiolet, Verizon’s senior vice president for consumer products, told the  Times that Verizon struck mobile rights for specific shows rather than crafting deals that provide access to entire networks. Expanding on its NFL mobile exclusive, Verizon Wireless announced last week that all current and legacy price plans will include live streaming of Sunday local NFL games as well as Thursday Night Football, Sunday Night Football and Monday Night Football matchups, plus mobile streaming access to NFL Network.

Verizon’s new mobile video offering will be network-agnostic, but will “work best” on Verizon networks, Marni Walden, EVP and president of product innovation and new business at Verizon, said on a conference call in June. She also confirmed that “ad-sponsored data” will be part of the offering.

Variety reported that the launch of Go90 could happen as soon as Tuesday (September 8), noting that a splash page for the service showed a customer agreement that temporarily read: “Effective date: September 8, 2015.”

Verizon has been asked for further comment about the apparent imminent launch of the Go90 service.

Comcast, meanwhile, appears to be nearing the debut of Watchable, an ad-supported OTT service tailored for younger audiences, but has not announced a launch date for the service, nor confirmed that Watchable will be the name of the service when it does go live.