Virgin Media Adds Amazon Prime Video Direct Access

British pay-TV operator Virgin Media, beginning July 22, has added direct-access to Amazon Prime Video — six years after its landmark agreement with Netflix.

The deal affords Virgin’s 1.8 million TiVo-manufactured V6 set-top box subs access (with a separate subscription) to Amazon Originals, including “Good Omens,” “The Grand Tour,” “The Marvelous Mrs Maisel” and “Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan,” in addition to movies and Premier League soccer matches.

“Giving our customers the telly they love in one place is at the heart of what we do” David Bouchier, chief digital entertainment officer at Virgin Media, said in a statement.

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Since Virgin Media became one of the first pay-TV operators to embrace — not shun — Netflix, more than 800 million hours of the SVOD behemoth’s programming has been streamed by subscribers.

Prime Video integration means Virgin Media subs can search, favorite and save Netflix programming on their home screen.

“Virgin TV brings the best programming together so our customers can enjoy top-class entertainment and sport when and how they want,” Bouchier said. “Alongside our leading ultrafast broadband, it’s the best way to watch the best TV.”

Hilton, Netflix Partner for Direct Access in Hotel Rooms

Netflix has partnered with Hilton to offer consumers direct access to the subscription streaming video service in hotel rooms.

The collaboration enables guests staying in “Connected Rooms” to access their Netflix account by logging in either by entering their credentials with the remote control or the keyboard on the Hilton Honors app.

The rooms also give guests the ability to control the temperature, lights, TV and more from their mobile device or the TV remote.

Hilton Honors app users can add Netflix and other streaming media providers and TV channels to their favorites list. Hotel guests who prefer the TV remote can press the remote’s Netflix button, which powers on the TV and goes directly to the Netflix login screen.

The Netflix button has been a mainstay on streaming media device remote controls for years.

“We know our guests want to feel connected while traveling, just as they do at home, so we’re giving them seamless access to their favorite Netflix shows, films and specials while on the road,” Noelle Eder, EVP and chief information and digital officer for Hilton, said in a statement.

Bill Holmes, head of business development for Netflix, said the partnership extends the service’s strategy affording subscribers ubiquitous access.

“We’re thrilled to be bringing our service to Hilton guests all over the world,” Holmes said.

Hotel guests without a Netflix account will be able to sign up in their room and start watching immediately, while current Netflix members can watch exactly where they left off before checking in. The Connected Room platform ensures a guest’s login information stays secure and clears automatically upon checkout, unless they choose to clear it sooner through the TV.

Hilton currently has more than 1,800 Connected Rooms, and plans to roll out the technology to tens of thousands of rooms in hundreds more hotels across the U.S. in 2019 as well as the first non-U.S. locations.

British Telecom Incorporates Amazon Prime Video

Taking a page from Netflix’s playbook, British Telecommunications Company (BT) has inked the first U.K. pay-TV deal with Amazon affording its subscribers direct-access to Prime Video.

Netflix since 2013 has gradually incorporated its service to pay-TV operators with an embedded app that affords users direct-access to the SVOD pioneer with a separate subscription.

London-based BT said the agreement enables subs to stream Amazon original content such as “The Grand Tour,” “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” the U.S. Open Tennis Championship, and Premier League soccer matches.

“Our ambition is to offer an unrivalled choice of TV content for our customers by partnering with the very best providers and, with Prime Video joining a brilliant line-up including BT Sport, Netflix, Now TV, BBC iPlayer,” Tony Singh, content and business development director at BT, said in a statement.

The Prime Video app is included in BT TV set-top boxes, with existing subs receiving the app upgrade beginning June 21.

“We’re delighted to add to that range of devices with Prime Video now available to access via BT TV set top boxes – we think customers are going to love the opportunity to stream their favorite Prime Original shows and Prime exclusive sports on the device,” said Brett Ballbach, business development director for Prime Video Europe.