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The Anime Network on Akimbo

posted on by Christopher Macdonald
TAN Comes to Internet VOD

Akimbo, an Internet Video on Demand service, announced today at NATPE that The Anime Network (TAN) would be offered on the service shortly; although no official date has been announced, they are expecting TAN to be available in mid-February.

Akimbo is an Video on Demand service that operated over the Internet, but connects to your TV. Focusing on the TV market, Akimbo is available in two flavors, as a set-top box that connects to your TV, or for Windows Media Center. Akimbo is not available for regular Windows PCs (or any other operating system).

Currently Akimbo offers anime via Adult Swim, AnimeOne (A CPM offering) and other program offerings. Akimbo CEO Josh Goldman told ANN that Anime is the third most watched category on Akimbo (after TV show archives and music videos), outperforming even sports. And when Akimbo asked its subscribers what they wanted to see more of, anime was consistently the most requested feature.

Goldman says, "Because of prior experiments and reactions, we decided to make anime a real focus." Saying that they were pleasantly surprised at the demand for anime on their service, Goldman states that they approached TAN five months ago. "We found that a lot of existing users were downloading anime, but also that a lot of new users joined because of the anime offerings."

As with other channels on Akimbo, TAN will be split between "Free! for all" content, which is Free! with the monthly Akimbo subscription, and "Premium" content, which involves its own monthly subscription for the channel. Like other channels, such as Turner Classic Movies, Goldman expects roughly one third of the TAN content to be Free!. Access to TAN's premium content will cost $9.99 a month.

Akimbo will offer approximately 100 hours of TAN content at any given time, roughly four times as much available from most cable networks that carry TAN. TAN is currently uploading the first 100 hours worth of content to the service, and expects to refresh about 50 hours worth each month.

Currently Akimbo is available only in standard TV, however they have demoed a high definition version and expect to make an announcement regarding commercial availability of HD later this quarter.

Akimbo is also looking into making their service available for non Media Center PCs, but they have technical and legal hurdles to overcome in order to do so. No decision on when, or even if, Akimbo will be available for regular PCs has been made.

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