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C&W Scores MovieLink Content Delivery Deal

Telco and technology giant Cable & Wireless has inked a deal to provide the content delivery infrastructure for the high-profile MovieLink movie rental service, beating out rival Akamai .

Cable & Wireless, which was been embroiled in a legal squirmish with Akamai over content delivery technology, said it would build a customized content delivery infrastructure capable of storing a large volume of content for MovieLink.

Specifically, MovieLink will be using C&W's caching servers and storage devices at multiple locations across the U.S to support capacity requirements and reach as many broadband customers as possible.

Akamai officials could not be reached Monday to discuss if it was in the running for the MovieLink deal.

MovieLink, which is backed by big-name Hollywood firms Warner Brothers, Paramount, Universal Studios, MGM, and Sony Pictures has already turned to IBM for managed hosting services, including systems operations and network management. Armonk, N.Y.-based IBM has also been chosen to lend technical counsel and deliver computing resources on-demand from its U.S. data centers to support MovieLink's operations.

Much like the online subscription-based music services, MovieLink is hawking on-demand movie rentals to high-speed (broadband) Internet users and the company said it opted for Cable & Wireless because the service depended heavily on a reliable infrastructure.

"We have a tremendous amount of content to offer our customers, and we needed a service provider who could meet our unique storage, caching and content delivery capabilities," said MovieLink CEO Jim Ramo. "The performance and reliability of Cable & Wireless' content delivery network allows us to deliver a reliable online movie rental experience that will keep MovieLink customers coming back again and again."

The Santa Monica, Calif.-based MovieLink did not play favorites when it was looking for DRM technology providers. It tabbed Microsoft's Windows Media Digital Rights Management (DRM) for secure access as well as the Windows Media 9 Audio and Video technology. MovieLink's DRM software, one of which Microsoft will supply, will allow a customer to choose the desired viewing format of a movie.

MovieLink also opted for technology from Microsoft rival RealNetworks to provide DRM and RealVideo and RealOne Player services. As with the Microsoft agreement, RealNetworks will supply one of MovieLink's DRM products to allow a customer to choose the desired viewing format of a film.

This article originally appeared in internetnews.com.