Aug 3 (Reuters) - Five private-sector broadcasters and advertising giant Dentsu Inc are teaming up to commercialize services next spring that will enable people to watch both television shows and related online episodes on an Internet-connected TV, the Nikkei business daily reported.
With a growing number of individuals tuning into programming on their personal computers or smartphones, the broadcasters and Dentsu are eager to keep TV viewers from straying by offering them the ability to watch online episodes on their TVs, the daily said.
Existing TV receivers are not equipped to handle such services. Several consumer electronics manufacturers are set to debut new receivers as early as next spring that will enable them to do so, the paper reported.
Dentsu and the five broadcasters — Nippon Television Network Corp , TV Asahi Corp , Tokyo Broadcasting System Holdings Inc unit Tokyo Broadcasting System Television Inc, TV Tokyo Holdings Corp unit TV Tokyo Corp and Fuji Media Holdings Inc unit Fuji Television Network Inc — are also negotiating with public broadcaster Japan Broadcasting Corp, better known as NHK, to join the initiative, the Nikkei said.
The five private-sector broadcasters have combined roughly 6,500 online programs such as dramas, documentaries and sports to offer, with the lineup set to expand. The service is expected to charge viewers about 300 yen ($3.89) per one-hour episode, the paper reported.
Broadcasters have, until now, each distributed programs on their own sites, with individuals mainly viewing them on PCs and other devices. By offering a way to watch both TV programming and online episodes on their TVs, the companies hope to woo more viewers, the business daily reported.
$1 = 77.145 Japanese Yen Reporting by Ankur Banerjee in Bangalore