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Nokia and Netflix partner up to boost UK Lumia smartphone sales

In an effort to boost sales of its Lumia smartphones in the UK, Nokia has inked a deal to provide free access to Netflix on devices offered by Vodafone and Phones 4u in the region.

Those who purchase a Lumia 625 or 925 on Vodafone will get six months of free Netflix, while those who opt for the higher-end Lumia 1020 will get a year-long Netflix subscription, the carrier confirmed.

The offer will be available until 31 December, and buyers have until 31 January 2014 to claim their Netflix membership.

Phones 4u, meanwhile, announced last month that it would offer six months of free Netflix with the 41-megapixel Nokia Lumia 1020. The smartphone launched on the network on 25 September.

According to The Financial Times, Nokia will foot the bill for the Netflix deal. The offer comes before the crucial holiday shopping season, and this year Nokia plans to go all out in pushing its Lumia lineup, the paper said.

Finland's Gigantti will also offer six months of free Netflix with the purchase of a Lumia 625, the FT added.

Netflix inked a similar deal with Google when it released its Chromecast dongle. Initial buyers were provided with three free months of Netflix, but Chromecast proved so popular that Google ended the promotion after only a few days.

As for Nokia, the company is holding a 22 October event in Abu Dhabi, where it is expected to launch the Lumia 1520, a Windows Phone phablet running Windows Phone 8.1.

Earlier this week, meanwhile, there were reports that Netflix is in talks with cable providers to offer access to Netflix streaming via providers' set-top boxes.

Among the content customers can expect on those set-top boxes and Lumia devices is a new psychological thriller series from Damages creators Todd A. Kessler, Daniel Zelman, and Glenn Kessler.

Netflix today announced a deal with Sony Pictures Television for a 13-episode run of the unnamed series, which is set to begin production in early 2014. "The series is a tightly wound thriller that explores the complex bonds between parents and children, brothers and sisters, and the rivalries, jealousies, and betrayals at the core of every family," Todd Kessler, Zelman and Glenn Kessler said in a statement.