ARD content will then also appear in a search in ZDFmediathek – and vice versa, as the general directors of the broadcasters announced at a joint press conference. At the same time, they emphasised that the two catch-up services will remain legally independent and will not be merged.
Together, ARD and ZDF have a catalogue of more than 250,000 films, series, documentaries and other content. The catch-up services are to become entrance doors to the joint streaming cosmos. The user interfaces of the broadcasters’ own catch-up services will remain in place and, as before, serve users who are watching the linear channels and enter the catch-up areas via HbbTV.
In the streaming network, a meta search function will cover both offerings. In addition, both catch-up services will in future offer a joint personalisation and recommendation system. There will therefore be a single user account for both platforms in future. Recommended and personalised content can be played wherever the user happens to be. ARD videos can be watched in the ZDFmediathek and ZDF content can be watched on ARD.
The joint streaming network is to be built up gradually in the coming years – and is open to other public service offerings.