NEW YORK – Google Inc. will let consumers buy video over the Internet from CBS, the NBA and other providers, becoming the latest company to explore the new method of distributing TV content, according to a report Thursday.
The Wall Street Journal, citing unnamed people familiar with the matter, said Google plans to make the announcement Friday at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
Google (GOOG) began making video available for free last year, offering everything from amateur footage of a kid falling off a roof to the premiere episode of the television show "Everybody Hates Chris," which broadcasts on UPN, a CBS Corp. (CBS) network.
The search engine leader had always planned on making some of its video available for a fee, through distribution arrangements with content partners. According to the Journal, Google plans to announce deals with CBS and the National Basketball Association.
Google spokeswoman Eileen Rodriguez would not confirm or deny the report, saying only that the company had "a number of exciting announcements that we look forward to sharing in detail" during co-founder Larry Page's Friday keynote at CES.
Video promises to be competitive online.
In recent months, Apple Computer Inc. (AAPL) raised the bar in making deals to sell shows old and new from ABC and NBC Universal for $1.99 each — viewable on computers and its newer iPods. The catalog includes "Lost" and "Law & Order."
The Journal said it did not know how much content owners might charge for the video throgh Google.