Currys and PC World to launch KnowHow on-demand service to rival Netflix and LoveFilm

Internet-connected devices sold by the retailers will come with the service pre-loaded

Electrical and computer retailers Currys and PC World are to become the latest entrants into the on-demand viewing market, today announcing the launch of a subscription-free television and film download service.

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The move by parent company Dixons into an increasingly crowded marketplace pits their service KnowHow Movies against competitors including LoveFilm, Tesco’s Blinkbox and Netflix (which launched in the UK in January) who offer a variety of payment models.

Available from 1 March, KnowHow Movies will allow customers to watch movies and TV shows on a pay-as-you-go basis on PCs and Macs, with the service extending to include a range of internet-connected devices such as TVs, Smartphones and tablets over the next six months. 

KnowHow has so far struck deals with film studios including Disney, Warner Bros, and Momentum Pictures, which have produced movies ranging from Winnie the Pooh to The Hangover Part II.

New films will be available on the day of their release and will cost £3.99 to rent and £12.99 to buy, while catalogue titles will start at £2.99 to rent and £5.99 to buy. TV shows cost from £1.99 per episode.

As part of its strategy, Dixons will pre-load KnowHow Movies onto all its new internet-connected devices and provide in-store demonstrations of the service. As the UK’s biggest electrical retailer, it already sells around 5 million units per year. 

Customers will be able to watch on up to five different devices, swapping between mobile and TVs or computers to continue watching films at home and on the move. 

KnowHow’s development director Niall O’Keeffe commented: “With KnowHow Movies we are offering customers the most flexible service available – they will only pay for what they watch, will have access to all the latest releases instantly, and can buy and view films and TV shows on a wide range of their connected devices. 

“As a high street retailer we are also in the unique position of being able to help customers who are less confident with tech by showing them how to install and use the service. 

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“TVs and the home entertainment sector is a cornerstone of our business, and it’s hugely exciting to be taking this next step and offering our customers great content to be enjoyed on their connected devices.”