Lightbox is upgrading its technology platform and will shortly launch Lightbox Movies, an on-demand pay per view movie service; Standard and Premium TV subscription options with enhanced features such as temporary downloads and Lightbox Kids, a dedicated safe area for children's content.
Hema Patel, General Manager of Lightbox explains the significance of the platform upgrade. 'We built the original Lightbox platform in the very early days of streaming services for New Zealand. Since then, SVOD services have matured and Kiwis are looking for streaming platforms that can deliver a variety of content, through a range of commercial models.
'We've decided to move to the Brightcove platform, which will give us the capability to expand and develop Lightbox as a media platform in a number of directions. It's the foundational capability we need to fully realise our media aspirations in future.
'Most immediately, we will launch a tiered service for Lightbox TV, allowing customers to choose between a Standard or a Premium subscription - and extend Lightbox's offering into on demand movies. Adding Transactional Video On Demand (TVOD) capability to our existing SVOD model will mean that both existing Lightbox subscribers and casual visitors will be able to rent the latest movies without a subscription. With over 300,000 subscribers, we're in a great position to open up these new options to a significant number of NZ families.'
The platform upgrade will be completed in April. Following the switch-over, customers will see a number of changes.
Existing Lightbox TV subscribers will be able to log in to Lightbox and rent pay per view movies. People who don't have a Lightbox TV subscription will be able to create a profile and rent pay per view movies with no contracts, no strings attached.
Lightbox TV subscribers will have a choice between a Standard and Premium subscription. Customers on the Premium service will be able to download all TV content available on Lightbox to their mobile devices, making it available to view offline when they're travelling or away from an internet or mobile connection. In addition, they will be able to seamlessly watch over multiple devices and enjoy higher quality viewing at lower bandwidth requirements. Spark customers on eligible mobile and broadband plans will continue to get a Standard Lightbox subscription included in their plan - or can choose to pay a small top up charge to access the Premium subscription.
All Lightbox TV customers will be able to access a dedicated Kids TV area, packed with fun and educational TV shows that kids love. TV content will be available via the normal subscription packages, while children's and family movies will be available to purchase through Lightbox Movies but only once an adult has consented to the purchase. Password pin protection between adult and child profiles will make it easy and safe for parents to keep their children entertained.
Movie titles for launch are still being confirmed, but Lightbox plan to have hundreds of titles immediately available with many more added every week. There's also an exciting array of new TV in the pipeline, with the second series of The Handmaid's Tale dropping with a double episode, exclusively on Lightbox Thursday 26 April.
Notes to the editor:
Lightbox can be used by anyone with an internet connection and is compatible with selected Samsung, Panasonic, LG and Sony Smart TVs. Viewers can watch Lightbox directly on their phone, tablet and laptop, or connect Lightbox to their TV using Chromecast, Airplay or an HDMI cable. The Lightbox app is also available on Apple TV Gen 4 / 4K, as well as PlayStation.
No monthly fee or subscription to watch movies.
Movie pricing to be confirmed.
Customers can temporarily download movies to their mobile device.
Lightbox TV, including Lightbox Kids
Standard Lightbox TV subscription stays at $12.99 a month or included for Spark customers on eligible plans. This now includes Lightbox Kids, providing great children's TV in a safe environment.
Premium Lightbox TV subscription includes the additional functionality over the standard subscription:
Ability to temporarily download any TV show available on Lightbox to a personal device.
Ability to watch up to 4 streams simultaneously on different devices
Premium Lightbox TV subscription pricing to be announced in due course.