Orange Planning VOD Site For French TV

Orange’s move in to online services not dependent on mobile continues – well, at least in France. Later this year, it will launch Welles, a VOD site offering “mid-tail” recent archive shows. Most videos (500,000 at launch) will be ad-supported but some premium content is planned, Variety reports. Bizarrely, it’s said to be named after Orson Welles.

At home in France, Orange’s three-screen strategy has been going strong for several years. Underpinned by its IPTV service in what is the world’s biggest IPTV market, it offers Rewind TV, a catch-up telly service, also over mobile and PC. Details are scant but Welles’ primary delivery would seem to be over PC (the website at Orange Vallee, the division responsible for the project, says: “The intention is to launch each project on one of these screens, then extend it to the others”). Orange launched a news video website, Actu 24/24, last month.

Not clear which distributors Orange has got on board for Welles. In other markets, it might be left to broadcasters to deliver such a service online. Dailymotion comes from France but is internationalist. Orange is a strong indigenous player, and Welles would seem to go up against offerings like Dailymotion and YouTube.