Intertainer and Akamai Technologies plan to announce an alliance Monday to deliver video-on-demand to the computers of consumers with high-speed Internet connections. The service is now available in two markets and will be broadly available by the end of the year, the companies said.

The alliance will involve Intertainer's library, which includes the licensing rights to entertainment programming from more than 60 media companies, including DreamWorks SKG, Sony Music, Warner Bros. and Columbia TriStar Television. The material -- including first-run films, archived films, music videos and television specials -- is not stored on the user's computer, but is viewed or heard as it streams in from the Internet.

Using the distribution technology and services of Akamai, of Cambridge, Mass., Intertainer, which is based in Culver City, Calif., will be able to move rapidly into markets across the country.

The alliance of Intertainer and Akamai follows last month's announcement from Enron, the Houston-based utility and energy giant, that it had entered a 20-year agreement with Blockbuster to deliver movies on demand into homes as a digitized video stream.

Analysts say that while Blockbuster's strong brand holds certain advantages, Intertainer is, so far, the only player to have introduced a working service. It has been in test markets for nearly two years, and is commercially available in Cincinnati, through the service of Broadwing, and in Denver, through Qwest.

And although Intertainer is a small, privately held company, it has powerful owners: Microsoft, Intel, NBC, Sony, Qwest and Comcast.

"Blockbuster has all the distribution, sales and brand you could want, but no service," said Julani Zeribi, an analyst with Current Analysis. "At the end of the day, their announcement was, 'We intend to do this, provided everything comes together.' Intertainer already has a service, and Akamai can do this, right here, right now."

John Taplin, Intertainer's president and chief executive, said the service could make first-run movies available for $2.95 for viewing any time within a 24-hour period, with archive films available for $1.95, television shows for 25 cents, and music videos and other material free. The content is encrypted using Microsoft's digital rights management technology, which prevents copying or redistribution by the user.

The quality of the sounds and images, which must be viewed on a computer, is comparable to VHS tape, but not DVD, but test-market results have shown this is acceptable, he said.

While the Internet is a global medium, the so-called streaming technology employed by Intertainer and other online distributors of video information tends to work better the fewer network leaps it must make across the Internet. Akamai specializes in distributing Internet material in a way that makes it appear to the recipient's computer that it is originating locally.

"What the Akamai deal does for us is to quickly offer the service in hundreds of metropolitan areas instead of a few," Taplin said. Intertainer has agreements with Internet service providers covering about 75 percent of the United States, and is negotiating with others for the balance. Initially, the service would be available only to computer users with DSL lines, although Intertainer is also talking with cable companies.

kamai's service speeds delivery of World Wide Web pages and streaming media by moving such digital content to servers spread around the globe, thus bypassing bottlenecks in the broad Internet.

"If your last-mile connection is good, we should have a server close enough to capitalize on that," said Jonathan Seelig, Akamai's vice president, strategy and corporate development. "It will be broadly available across the country by the end of the year."