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Viacom to launch My Nick Jr. service in China

MUMBAI: Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN) Asia, a division of US media conglomerate, has entered into a collaboration with Smit, which offers conditional access module (CAM) manufacturing based in China.

The My Nick Jr., a user-personalised edutainment programming service that allows parents to curate and customise their children’s multiplatform linear viewing experience around 11 educational themes, will be launched in China by both partners – marking the first time in the world that My Nick Jr. will be delivered as a dedicated over-the-top (OTT) service. This collaboration also signifies the inaugural introduction of My Nick Jr. in Asia following successful debuts of the service in France and the UK, and an announced launch in the US.

My Nick Jr. in China will be available to subscribers of iVmall, an OTT Internet video service platform operated by Shenzhen Video Mall Network Technology Co. Ltd, a subsidiary of SMIT. iVmall will run China’s first completely paid subscriber model for an Internet video service and is expected to roll out My Nick Jr. as part of iVmall’s commercial launch by middle of 2014 via iOS and Android apps and a dedicated website.

My Nick Jr. in China will feature hundreds of Nick Jr. episodes, including titles such as ‘Dora the Explorer’, ‘Go Diego Go!’, ‘Team Umizoomi’ and ‘Ni Hao Kai Lan’. The ad-free personalised programming service allows parents to create a customised My Nick Jr. profile and schedule for their child, according to their child’s age and gender, and 11 educational themes identified within the programs in Nick Jr.’s extensive library of preschool content (e.g. Problem Solving, Math, Language and more). My Nick Jr. also constantly adapts to the preferences of each child, who may at any time use the app to rate each episode.

The partnership with Smit also marks the first time that My Nick Jr. will be offered in two languages in one market, providing parents the option to set their children’s viewing experience to English or Mandarin. Additionally, parents may choose desired viewing durations, can be sent email ‘report cards’ summarizing what their children have watched and which topics have been covered within the viewed episodes, and use the shows for discussions with their children.

VIMN president, CEO Bob Bakish said, “Nick Jr. is about giving children and parents what they want – ‘A Smart Place to Play’. With My Nick Jr., we are offering parents a unique user-personalized digital viewing edutainment experience for their children to learn in a safe, supervised environment while maximising their enjoyment watching their beloved Nick Jr. shows and characters like ‘Dora the Explorer’.

“We’re thrilled to be SMIT’s exclusive international kids’ entertainment app partner for pre-school children through this collaboration on iVmall. Smit not only shares our belief in this product for children, but also delivers the technology know-how to bring My Nick Jr. to life in China.”

Smit chairman, CEO Xueliang Huang said, “We are convinced of the potential of the My Nick Jr. service as we are living in the world of personalisation. Chinese families who join our Internet video service will love the My Nick Jr. service for their children and we are delighted to not only be the first Internet video platform to launch it in China, but in Asia too. This certainly reinforces our commitment to be a serious player in the burgeoning Internet Video service market in China”.

According to the latest report by CNNIC, 247 out of nearly 500 million Chinese mobile users now watch videos online in China.

My Nick Jr. was first launched in France through CanalSat, a unit of Vivendi SA, in 2012. It has launched in the UK through Virgin Media for its TiVo customers and will soon launch in the U.S. through Verizon. VIMN Asia plans to roll out My Nick Jr. to other Asia pay-TV/OTT operators later.