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Verizon’s Go90 Nears Launch: Report

Go90, Verizon’s ad-supported “mobile first” OTT video service is inching toward its commercial debut, with a launch expected in the “coming days,” Bloomberg reported Tuesday, citing a person familiar with the situation.

Verizon has said previously that the service is poised for a late summer debut.

Update: Verizon has not pinpointed a launch date, but offered this statement: “Stay tuned, go90 will not be like anything you’ve seen from us before.”

In the meantime, Verizon has announced several content partners for Go90, including 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 and brings with it key programmatic advertising technology. 

According to Bloomberg, Go90 will start off with a smaller subset of content from partners such as AOL, DreamWorks Animation SKG, Awesomeness TV, Vice Media and Viacom.  That jibes with what Verizon CFO Fran Shammo said on the company’s second quarter earnings call last month: “It won't be the full entire of everything that we contemplate within the product set,” he said then.

Verizon Digital Media Services, Verizon’s cloud video unit, is expected to play a key role in the packaging and distribution of Go90.

“When I talk to our clients, one of the big priorities is how do they monetize and create value for their content online,” Bob Toohey, president of VDMS, told Multichannel News in a recent interview (subscription required). “We all know the ad dollar spend from TV to digital is moving and it’s just at the early stages. That’s where there’s a very large opportunity.”