The TV rumor mill is whirring with news that some of the biggest cable networks may follow Hulu’s lead, joining together to sell streaming content directly to viewers. And speaking of Hulu, we’re finally getting some vague idea of what its entry into live-TV streaming will cost. [More]
One reason some TV fans are tempted to cut the cord? Having to pay for a whole slew of basic channels when all you really want to watch is a few. Those are the people Apple is after with a reported plan to sell HBO, Showtime, and Starz as a bundle. [More]
It’s been two years since Verizon launched its Go90 streaming video service, and it often feels like the only people who talk about it are tech journalists who occasionally mention that it’s not doing well. Yet Verizon apparently believes that the work it put into Go90 can soon be used to build the latest entry into the streaming TV market. [More]
Even Comcast, the biggest cable company in the country, is starting to acknowledge a key reality: It’s 2017, and consumers, especially younger adults, don’t want to pay for cable television anymore. To that end, the rumor mill now says, Comcast is going to join the competition and launch a $15 streaming service — but you’ll have to have their internet service, first. [More]
AT&T’s plan to buy Time Warner — the parent company of several cable networks, not the cable company that Charter snapped up last year — was greeted with a surprising amount of skepticism right from the start. Even though AT&T is sidestepping a lot of regulatory scrutiny by not seeking FCC approval of the merger, lawmakers have continued to ask why this merger would benefit anyone other than the shareholders of these companies. AT&T’s response: Competition or prices won’t be affected because we’re such a small-time player in the pay-TV business, and Time Warner’s viewership numbers are low. [More]
The future is wireless. At least, so all the wireless companies say. Sure, running actual cables to houses and apartment buildings brought broadband this far, but the always-on, always-streaming future is just going to get more and more mobile. And so the current era of 4G LTE wireless connections will eventually give way to 5G, which promises to be faster, better, and stronger in every way. But before you can use 5G tech, first you have to make it, you know, work. [More]
The so-called “golden age of TV” may only be just now dawning for viewers, completely inundated with high-quality shows on every screen we own, but it’s more of a turbulent era for the companies that make our shows. With “cable TV” still morphing into “on-demand content anywhere,” programmers and distribution companies are struggling to adapt — and the smallest content companies may be the ones most likely to collapse or sell out as cord-cutters continue changing their habits. [More]
Millions of us have crossed the threshold where TV just comes from the internet now, and millions more are likely to follow in coming years. So it’s not really surprising that a traditional pay-TV company would be doubling down on selling access to its internet-delivered content… and its internet-connected delivery device. [More]
AT&T wireless customers can stream the company’s new DirecTV Now service without having the data go against their monthly limit. The company hopes it will give existing subscribers a reason to stick with AT&T and convince some others to switch providers to AT&T. However, T-Mobile is hoping to use DirecTV Now against AT&T, by offering to pay for a full year of the streaming service for AT&T defectors. [More]
When you want to watch an original comedy or drama series, you may cue up Netflix, Amazon, or even (gasp!) broadcast or cable networks. When you want to watch a livestream of some bored news editors trying to make a watermelon explode, or a press conference, or someone’s dog being silly, you might turn to Facebook Live video. But now it seems Facebook is jumping on the bandwagon everyone else is these days, and wants a chance to get scripted series and sports in front of your face too. [More]
At this point, it’s a hoary old saw that sports networks and broadcasts of live sporting events are one of the main reasons your pay-TV bills continue to rise. We all kind of “know” that sports are expensive, and that the costs come through to everyone else… but as millions of dollars in charges and fees become billions, are consumers and viewers going to stick around? [More]
Once upon a time (two whole years ago!) the idea of successfully getting an internet-based cable alternative up, running, and profitable seemed, perhaps, like a pipe dream. These days, even though we don’t know if the ventures are exactly profitable, the online competition to get your monthly TV dollars is fierce. And now Hulu is latest player to grab some big headliners for itsplan to start zapping linear TV channels to your online eyeballs. [More]
Exactly one year ago, Verizon announced that it was jumping hard into the streaming-media biz, with a mobile-friendly service designed for the giant consumer base everyone apparently loves to hate, millennials. The company called it “go90,” helpfully reminding everyone that to watch TV on your phone, you need to turn it 90 degrees to the horizontal. But skeptics wondered: is this really going to, y’know, work? Will anyone watch? Will anyone care? And a year on, we seem to have our answer: nope. [More]
When you just want to watch something, you probably look for it first on Netflix or Amazon. When you really treasure something and want to make it part of your library, you might buy the disc. But when do you buy a digital copy of a TV episode or a movie? Basically never, right? Yeah, and that’s the problem for the whole industry, because you’re not alone.
Once upon a time, TV was mostly a thing you watched for free, over an antenna. Commercials and corporate sponsorships made up the cost for networks. Then TV became cable. Then cable became your internet, and TV was once again briefly free, through streaming services with commercials. But then came subscription internet TV, and that’s where we are today, with Hulu finally pulling the plug on its non-subscription service.