If your company is a startup, I’m generally not a fan of trying to distribute your product or service exclusively through established TV and landline service providers such as Comcast or Verizon. Mobile apps via wireless carriers are but one exception. But if you’re Starz Entertainment and you have relationships with these service providers and your product is a movie distribution service based on subscription, then it’s also a different story.
As a standalone service, the cost of acquiring customers to Vongo must have been expensive. But by taking advantage of the existing billing relationships that Verizon’s FiOS TV has with its customers, Starz Play as the revamped service will now be known, will garner more exposure and, more importantly, more bundling opportunities. As Netflix has shown, a sustainable number of consumers like a subscription option for movies on demand. It’s just unfortunate that the handoff from Vongo couldn’t have been made more seamlessly.