Rogers, Shaw Set Launch for Netflix Rival

Two Canadian cable operators, Rogers Communications and Shaw Communications, have taken the wraps off of “shomi,” a subscription video streaming service that will lock horns with Netflix, which launched services in Canada about four years ago.  

Shomi, a joint venture equally owned by Rogers and Shaw, will launch the first week of November in beta form to the MSO’s broadband and TV customers. Shomi will start off with about 14,000 TV episodes and movie titles, including north of 11,000 hours of TV shows (340-plus TV series), and about 1,200 movies. Roughly 30% of that library is of Canadian origin, the companies said.  

The service, which shares some similarities with Comcast’s subscription-based, multiscreen Streampix service, will sell for C$8.99 per month (US$8.20) and initially be offered on tablets, smartphones, the Xbox 360 and set-top boxes. Shomi, which will also feature trailers and movie factoids, will allow for up to six profiles per account and let subscribers watch on two devices, plus a set-top box, at the same time. 

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