Intel looking to exit TV project, in talks with Verizon

Reuters

By Liana B. Baker

Oct 30 (Reuters) - Chipmaker Intel Corp is havingsecond thoughts about getting into the television business andis in talks with Verizon Communications Inc to take over itsInternet TV initiative, a source familiar with the matter saidon Wednesday.

The news was first reported on tech website All Things D,citing anonymous sources.

While discussions are in the advanced stages, it was stillunclear if Verizon plans to take full control of Intel'smedia unit or if Intel would maintain a stake in the unit, thereport said.

Representatives from Intel and Verizon both declined tocomment.

Earlier this year, Intel decided to launch an Internet TVservice with live and on-demand content in a bid to find analternative revenue stream as its core business of providingchips to computer makers erodes. It hired hundreds of workersand opened offices in Los Angeles and New York to work on theproject.

The field of players competing for in-home entertainmentaudiences is increasingly crowded. Apple Inc, GoogleInc, Sony Corp and Microsoft Corp are jockeying for position to own the living roomthrough TV, while Netflix Inc and Amazon.com Inc's streaming video services have millions of subscribers.

Verizon already has a streaming product as part of a jointventure with Redbox, which focuses mostly on streamingmovies and not on TV shows, according to its website. Thatproduct competes with Netflix.

Intel has struggled to reach content deals with mediacompanies even though it offered to pay sizeable premiums overtraditional cable rates.

Doubts about Intel's commitment to the venture emerged inJune after newly appointed Chief Executive Brian Krzanich warnedhe was taking a cautious approach to television, which is farfrom the company's core business of chip manufacturing.

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