Neon Alley Anime Channel Launches on PS3

The subscription channel–not a streaming services–promises round-the-clock anime on Sony consoles with a free starter week for the curious.

The service is from anime and manga publisher VIZ, who’ve been in the digital anime service for a while through outlets like Hulu. But with Neon Alley, they’re looking to provide the content channel with something similar to the Anime Network exclusively (for now, at least) on the PlayStation 3.

The plan is for Neon Alley to run 24 hours daily of dubbed and uncut anime programming on a regular schedule, what VIZ CEO Ken Sasaki describes as “appointment viewing,” which VIZ is hoping will allow viewers to discover new programming. It’s a sharp contrast to existing digital delivery systems like iTunes or Amazon Instant where you can simply get your preferred content on demand, so I’m curious as to how fans will react to being on the network’s clock when it comes to catching series like Naruto: Shippuden or InuYasha: The Final Act at their appointed times. Another hiccup might be the exclusivity: the PS3 has a broad reach, but obviously, anime fans congregate around a host of different consoles so large segments of the gaming audience is carved out right now.

A subscription will run you $6.99 a month, but you can get a free week for a limited time at NeonAlley.com.

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