German media giant Bertelsmann and US television networks ABC, C-Span and Time Warner have begun offering Internet services as media companies rush to join the race to develop online services.
Bertelsmann has signed to provide an online news channel from its RTL station to America Online users, while the US networks have agreed to use Progressive Networks? Real Video software to send up-to-the-minute video clips of news, sport and music across the Internet.
Both partnerships hope to influence the way people collect information using video on demand, but they will not offer everything free. Sports channel ESPN currently offers online access for $5 per month.
Bertelsmann is spending DM5 million on its service, which begins in March, while Progressive Networks? software is available to download now.
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