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Sony secures HBO deal for PlayStation 3

Premium $2.99 price for episodes from Entourage, True Blood channel; 11 month delay between broadcast and console

Sony Computer Entertainment America has secured a deal with Time Warner's HBO channel to offer programmes such as True Blood, Curb Your Enthusiasm and Entourage on the PlayStation 3.

Eleven HBO series' will be on offer to begin with, with content to be added every Tuesday. The shows will air around 11 months after premiering on the HBO network, around the same time they appear on DVD, and will sell for a premium price of $2.99 per episode.

"HBO is a high-profile content provider, and a real premium service, so we think this really reinforces that the PlayStation is more than just a videogame console now," said Jack Tretton, chief executive of Sony PlayStation, speaking to NASDAQ.

"It gives consumers that big-screen, HD experience in the home on a device other than cable and satellite, and that's becoming the norm now as opposed to the exception. Networks like HBO can be beholden to the cable and satellite companies, or they can play wherever the consumers play."

The time lag between broadcast on HBO and the PlayStation 3 will help continue to serve cable and satellite subscribers, said HBO president Henry McGee, who said that digital distirbution is a growing part of the HBO business.

"We can use this platform to reinforce the premium positioning for HBO," he said. "The download business in general has become an important profit contributor for us. It's not yet nearly as large as the physical sales channel, but the trend is a good one."

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Matt Martin avatar
Matt Martin: Matt Martin joined GamesIndustry in 2006 and was made editor of the site in 2008. With over ten years experience in journalism, he has written for multiple trade, consumer, contract and business-to-business publications in the games, retail and technology sectors.
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