vikings

Is a Vikings invasion coming? A+E network strikes deal to stream shows on Yahoo, AOL

Contributed by
Jan 3, 2018

Everyone wants a piece of the streaming game. Now that includes Oath.

Oath is the foreboding-sounding combination of Yahoo and AOL that Verizon created, and now it has a deal to stream select A+E Networks shows.

The shows are yet to be deterined, but bingers hoping for more convenient access to  History Channel's Vikings can only hold out hope for their blood-and-ocean show to fall under this purview.

The Game of Thrones-like show, approaching a sixth season, is one of many shows across all of the A+E brands (including A&E, Lifetime, History, and Viceland) that could potentially find their streaming rights altered (Vikings, for example, has been available with a Hulu subscription).

According to Variety, “the availability of A+E programming to watch for free on Oath properties — relative to linear TV premiere — will be determined on a case-by-case basis,” so not everything will be immediately watchable after it airs -- but it sounds like for some shows, that might be the case.

The deal also allows Verizon first-look rights at original digital content from A+E’s digital arm, but the library of existing content is the real draw here. Brian Angiolet, Verizon’s senior vice president and global chief media and content officer, said, “We’re excited to offer fans of A+E Networks more access than ever across Verizon’s Fios footprint and now, across our family of digital-media properties.”

Establishing Oath as a bridge between traditional TV and streaming is how Verizon is positioning its service, as Angiolet continues to say that this deal “is yet another example of how we’re fueling our new Oath media brands and becoming the first screen for premium content across genres.”

More efficient TV on the go -- with some coming free -- is never a bad thing, and the experimentation done by Verizon here, finding a convenient service to get shows more eyes, is part of the industry’s natural evolution in the face of an audience full of cord-cutters. We're still in the Wild West of streaming, but it's interesting to see how the models evolve.

This story was originally published on Wednesday morning and has since been updated.