WASHINGTON – CBS Corp. (CBS) has launched a Web site that will offer new programming as well as some of its existing TV shows, as competition intensifies between broadcasters and Internet firms such as Google Inc. (GOOG).
The site, called innertube, was launched on Thursday and will be free to viewers and supported by advertising. Cadbury Schweppes, Chili's, Pier 1 Imports Brinkmann Corp. and Verizon SuperPages.com are its initial advertising sponsors, CBS said.
A link to innertube can be found at CBS.com.
CBS's new site, whose early plans the company first discussed with Reuters in February, comes on the heels of a decision by Walt Disney Co. (DIS)-owned ABC network to offer its top shows online for free viewing after they have aired on the network.
CBS's site will initially feature new shows created exclusively for the Web as well as programs that are "companions" to its TV shows.
CBS said it also plans to make some of its top shows available on the site "in the coming months" after they have aired on TV. Shows from its archive of 2,600 titles and 100,000 hours of programming will also be available.
"With this broadband channel, we've essentially bypassed cable and created a general entertainment outlet utilizing existing creative and content resources," Leslie Moonves, chief executive of CBS, said in a statement.
Programming for innertube debuts this month with a handful of original shows including "Greek to Chic," a college-based reality series and "Beyond Survivor," a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of the TV show.
In February, CBS said it planned to sell new episodes of "Survivor" for $1.99 from its site.