Angry Birds hits 1.7 billion downloads, "Toons" launching March 17

Calling it an industry first, Rovio is launching a video distribution channel across all of the developer's Angry Birds game titles on smartphones and tablets. Starting on March 17, gamers will be able to access the channel when it unlocks on that day. Angry Birds Toons will also be available from a handful of video-on-demand channel providers, as well as on select TV networks around the world.

In conjunction with today's announcement of more Angry Birds Toons details, Rovio has announced that the Angry Birds series has racked up 1.7 billion downloads, which is absolutely unprecedented and it certainly made us do a double take. It's not exactly said what counts as a download, but perhaps Rovio could be counting an update as a download in this case.

Because of the massive user base that Angry Birds has, bringing the Angry Birds Toons animated series directly to the game allows for "a far wider and more engaged global audience than traditional distribution would allow." The show will consist of 52 episodes that will release on a weekly basis, and they will continue the saga about the battle between the Angry Birds and the green pigs.

Angry Birds Toons will also be available on Samsung Smart TVs, and on Comcast video platforms in the US. The show will make its way to Roku boxes and other devices eventually, but no timeline has been planned out just yet. And while the cartoon will be available on various devices starting on March 17, it will air on network television on March 16.