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ITV and BBC launching BritBox rival to Netflix, but it won't be available in Ireland

The service will be available in Northern Ireland but not the Republic

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BBC show McMafia could also feature on the service (Nick Wall/BBC)

BBC show McMafia could also feature on the service (Nick Wall/BBC)

BBC show McMafia could also feature on the service (Nick Wall/BBC)

The new streaming service planned by British broadcasters BBC and ITV to rival behemoths Netflix and Amazon will not be available in the Republic of Ireland.

BritBox would feature British boxsets like Broadchurch and McMafia as well as new shows commissioned for the service.

Talks are ongoing and Channel 4 and Channel 5 are reportedly also in talks about joining the venture, which would launch later this year.

While it will be available across the UK, including Northern Ireland, it will not be available in the Republic.

However, this may change as while there are no plans to launch in Ireland right now, BritBox already operates outside the UK in the US and Canada.

A BBC spokesperson told Independent.ie that they "do make commercial decisions on extending to other markets on a case by case basis."

Speaking to the media this week, ITV chief executive Carolyn McCall said BritBox would not be competing directly with Netflix, but would be “complementary”.

“Netflix is global … when we’re creating content, we’re creating it for the UK … We’re not a substitute to Netflix – we’re complementary to Netflix,” she said.

The service would be “very good for British creative industries, because we are putting more money into the British creative industry”, she added.

A similar service was proposed ten years ago but was rejected by the Competition Commission which ruled that British viewers did "not regard other content as a good substitute".

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The rise in popularity of Netfli, Amazon and Sky's Now TV, however, have changed the landscape unimaginably in the past decade and have been affecting the viewing figures for traditional TV and in turn advertising revenues.

Last year in the UK TV streaming services subscriptions surpassed pay TV services for the first time.

BBC Director-General Tony Hall said, "The service will have everything from old favourites to recent shows and brand new commissions. It’s an exciting time for the viewing public.”

The subscription price has not yet been revealed, but reports suggest it could cost £5 a month.


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