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In a first for a cable company, the U.K.’s Virgin Media will offer Netflix (s NFLX) access to about 40,000 customers who use TiVo (s TIVO) set-top boxes, and plans to roll out access to all of its 1.7 million TiVo users by the end of the year.
Customers will still need a Netflix subscription to be able to access the app, but they’ll be able to “search for Netflix shows on the same on-screen guide they use to hunt for pay-TV programs,” Bloomberg reports. “It’s the first time Netflix has ever been added to an operator box,” TiVo spokesman Steve Wymer said in a statement to Bloomberg. “It’s a big deal, especially if it helps open the gates for operators globally to integrate and stream over-the-top content.”
For now, customers will continue to pay Netflix for their Netflix subscription, not Virgin. But the BBC says that eventually, “Virgin may offer Netflix as part of a bundled service.”