Directv 4th Quarter numbers are dismal.

Discussion in 'DIRECTV General Discussion' started by dreadlk, Jan 30, 2019.

  1. Jan 31, 2019 #41 of 145
    bills976

    bills976 Godfather/Supporter

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    They need to find a way to turn those customers into higher profit subscribers. I was one of those customers that got the free Apple TV with 3 months of their "Live a Little" package. I was a former D* subscriber so I was an ideal candidate to move to this product.

    The DVR was broken more often than it worked - shows were just missing or wouldn't play. The stream buffered like crazy. The UI of their app made it clumsy to do anything.

    I moved to Hulu Live TV and have been happy ever since. The service "just works" for me.

    AT&T can crow all they want about people like me being "unprofitable", but the reason we're unprofitable is because they literally had to give away a $150 piece of hardware to get us to sign up for 4 months of their crappy service. If they actually invested in quality and reliability, maybe their churn rate would be lower.
     
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  2. Jan 31, 2019 #42 of 145
    mjwagner

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    Don’t know if you have looked at it already but for sports junkies FuboTV looks promising.
     
  3. Jan 31, 2019 #43 of 145
    Rich

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    We have 300 down, not many Internet issues, so we should see no/few problems? On an ATV the picture looks as good as the other apps? ATVs are pretty much all we use. I would like to try it but I tried PS Vue last year about this time and once the Super Bowl was over there was nothing on D* that we wanted to see. I'm gonna need something like Now for sure if I ever decide to dump D*. That plan you have is the lower tier? Do you get YES on that? I thought I had to get a higher tier to get YES. Does Now off NFL ST?

    Thanks,

    Rich
     
  4. Jan 31, 2019 #44 of 145
    Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    Just checked their site, it does look promising. Even has Hallmark Movies and Mysteries, don't know what that has on it or whether that would fit my wife's needs. I'll give it a try when the baseball season begins in April. I want to try PS Vue again when the games are on so I'll have something to record. Should have waited for that last year. Also gonna try out DTVN. Fubo appears to have every channel the Yankees are on.

    Rich
     
  5. Jan 31, 2019 #45 of 145
    bills976

    bills976 Godfather/Supporter

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    FWIW, I trialed Fubo about 6 months ago and found the frame rate to be real choppy. Perhaps now they are up to 60fps on their sports channels but at the time, they weren't up to snuff with other options.

    As much as I complained about DirecTV Now above, the one thing they did have was a decent frame rate. Everything looked great when the service actually worked.
     
  6. Feb 1, 2019 #46 of 145
    TV_Guy

    TV_Guy New Member

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    Don't know your about your OTA reception. Fubo like almost every service is missing WPIX. So you need to add WPIX for their twenty or so Yankees games. The locast app runs on Roku and provides free reception for locals in a few markets including 18 channels in the NYC metro area. It is geo fenced so you need to check to see if you are inside their fencing. Also runs from a pc. Just need to create a login.
    Home - Locast

    Forgot to mention that Fubo is also missing ESPN. So you would miss the Sunday Night ESPN Yankees games.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2019
  7. Feb 1, 2019 #47 of 145
    DFWHD

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    My observation based experience over the last 6 months and reading forums has been that faster and reliable internet seems to lead to a better experience. It's streaming though, so not 100% like you're used to with D*. PQ depends a lot on the TVs you have. Most of ours are 1080P HD 32" - 40" and one 65" 4K. The picture is not quite as crisp as D*, but close on the smaller sets. We did have to bump the picture settings on the 65" slightly, but are happy with it. Most channels are stereo with a few 5.1 dolby. That's not a deal breaker for us as we watch the 65" using an AVR and DSP. We're on the 2nd tier ($55/mo/$40 with AT&T Unl wireless). It has all the channels the family watches.

    We don't get YES here in Texas, but I looked up the zip codes for Piscataway (assuming you're still there) and plugged them in to the DTVN tool and YES shows up as a regional sports network along with MSG. NFT ST is only offered in certain markets for now, not in ours though. I can follow the Cowboys on OTA (not sure why I torture myself), so no need for ST on my side.

    I'm not trying to talk you out of leaving D*, just sharing our experience with DTVN as a former D* customer for over 20 years. We've experimented with a few services in the past year and DTVN fits into our needs at this point. Bottom line is we are saving close to $150 per month over D* due to their pricing just getting too high for our family.
     
  8. Feb 1, 2019 #48 of 145
    SledgeHammer

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    It depends on the source. The best TV in the world can't fix a crappy source. DirecTV definitely has some nice channels. CNN is usually my go to demo channel for people. Zero pixilation + bright vivid colors. Other channels, I see compression artifacts on. Streaming 4K is much better then DirecTV. Nothing will beat a good UHD disc with Dolby Vision though. Streaming in general depends on the source. I'm binge watching Burn Notice on AP right now and some of the episodes seem very staticy.

    Cost also depends on how many services you have. I know a few cord cutters and none of them only have one service. So it adds up.

    Other draw back on cord cutting is that you have a hodge podge of equipment and depending on how you hook it up, you wind up with little to no integration. Oh, I want to watch this program, I have to go to this device and this service and switch to this HDMI input. Vs. DirecTV where all your recordings are in one place in a unified interface.
     
  9. Feb 1, 2019 #49 of 145
    slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    The problem is that it is still unprofitable for them even at the $40/month list price without any signup giveaways. All the streaming MVPDs are, even if AT&T hadn't actually admitted that it would be simple to calculate since we know what locals cost these days ($10-$12/month) and what the basic ESPN channel group costs ($8 +) and that's half the $40 right there without adding in the rest of the channels or the cost of delivery.

    AT&T's CEO has mentioned that Directv Now's price might go up by about $20, and have a few of the less popular channels removed so they can make the service profitable. I wonder how many takers they'll have then? The competition faces the same problem. The only feasible way to have packages in that $30-$40 price range is not include locals and not include sports channels (count TNT/TBS among them because their asking prices are much higher than they otherwise would be thanks to the basketball & baseball games they show)
     
  10. Feb 1, 2019 #50 of 145
    SledgeHammer

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    So they're going to charge $60/mo? Why wouldn't I just stick with my existing setup that I pay like $76/mo on and get 2 or 3 times the channels? Preferred Xtra + HR24 + free OTA.

    There is a streaming bubble right now. Everybody and their mom sees Netflix and thinks they'll go and make their own in a week and make as much money as Netflix does. And all the cord cutters think they'll save a ton. Of course, completely ignoring a bunch of obvious facts:

    1) Netflix had a huge installed fanbase with the disc delivery business
    2) Netflix has been building up the streaming business for 12 yrs now
    3) Servers, bandwidth and storage are very costly investments

    You need to have a *lot* of eyeballs to make streaming profitable. I think Disney will learn this the hard way. They could have probably gotten a better deal from Netflix and let them worry about all that. Now Disney is saying it will spend more money then Netflix does to build up the service. DUMB. How long do you think it will take Disney to build up 200M subs? If ever? Especially since I expect they'll be charging $10 - $15 like everybody else does.

    Except, of course, Disney tried charging for content in the 70's and 80's when they were a premium channel on cable. How did that work out? Oh yeah, they had to go to basic cable and become ad supported.

    Went slightly off track there with Disney lol.. but the point is, its just another crypto bubble. It'll collapse in a few years when the very fragmented market can't pay for the cost of content and delivery. Or it'll become more expensive then cable / sat and people'll go back.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2019
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  11. Feb 1, 2019 #51 of 145
    slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    I don't know, why wouldn't you?

    There's no reason to expect savings in the long run with a streaming MVPD plan vs a traditional cable/satellite MVPD plan of equivalent channels. You could save on the equipment costs, but those are greatly inflated over the actual equipment cost so part of it is subsidizing the package cost and/or the provider's profit margin.

    Directv charges $7/month per TV. That pays for brand new Genie in probably two years, and for a client in six months. Your HR24 has been paid for several times over. Cable companies are often even worse, charging $10/month or more for equipment.

    There are only two ways for people with traditional cable/satellite to save money in the long run. One, switch to a package that doesn't include sports. Two, drop MVPD "live channels" TV entirely and go to canned OTT streaming only like Netflix, Hulu and so on. The former is fine for people who don't want sports (and doesn't necessarily require dropping cable/satellite) and the latter is fine for people who don't mind giving up certain content - i.e. you won't be able to watch ABC/Disney series and movies anywhere other than Disney's service before long, etc.
     
  12. Feb 1, 2019 #52 of 145
    Rich

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    I do have Locast. ESPN is essential for the Yankee games and Monday Night Football. Amazing how difficult this is.

    Rich
     
  13. Feb 1, 2019 #53 of 145
    Rich

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    I could put an antenna up, I had one for years on my roof and there is one in my attic. Rather not use them but it's a viable alternative.

    Rich
     
  14. Feb 1, 2019 #54 of 145
    Rich

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    I lived without the ST for years. We get so many football games each week it seemed senseless to pay that much for it. Got it at no cost last year, that's the only reason...but I liked it, I really enjoyed having all those games available. We used to get the Yankee games on MSG but in 2002 the owner, James Dolan, got into a dispute with someone and took the Yankee games out of MSG's lineup. That's the reason I have D* today. Dolan's a wrecking ball, look what he just did to the Knicks and Porzingis.

    Well, every time I try to do this I hit a wall because of my obsession with the Yankees and football. Path of least resistance is sticking with D* until I can latch onto a cable replacement service that has all the channels I need for the Yankees.

    I will try Now when the MLB season begins. Thanx very much for the info.

    Rich
     
  15. Feb 1, 2019 #55 of 145
    CTJon

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    What we are hearing and what we all experienced it that most solutions are missing something. So you end up with a couple of solutions and when you get done you aren't saving that much and have more inconvenience. Also, if you aren't doing heavy streaming do you really need the very high internet that is available to some.
    Not great solutions yet.
     
  16. Feb 1, 2019 #56 of 145
    Rich

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    Every solution seems to be missing something. Haven't done the trial on DTVN yet tho. We do have a higher Internet speed than we need but we didn't ask for it. We're paying about the same price we always paid. Thought it was kinda nice the provider did that. We went from 100 down to 200 down to 300 down and the price stayed about the same. Certainly don't "need" 300 down.

    Rich
     
  17. Feb 1, 2019 #57 of 145
    crkeehn

    crkeehn Godfather

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    For the Hallmark lovers. Philo basic has Hallmark, Hallmark Movies and Mysteries and Hallmark Drama all included in their basic $16 plan. The interface is kind of clunky but the streaming is not bad, with crisp pictures and occasional audio dropouts. As near as I can make out, Philo doesn't limit the amount of material you can save (dvr) but only saves it for 30 days.
     
  18. Feb 1, 2019 #58 of 145
    lparsons21

    lparsons21 Hall Of Fame

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    I sent you a mail...

    Here wth Mediacom the minimum these days is 100 down/500Gb cap, promos for upgrades from that are $10/year for a year or two depending on the deal and speed upgrades get you more bandwidth.

    If I'm reading you right the two things keeping you from going all streaming is Yes and the Hallmark channel. For me it is money at the moment and Golf.

    Sent from my Google Pixelbook using Tapatalk
     
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  19. Feb 1, 2019 #59 of 145
    rccoleman

    rccoleman AllStar

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    The issues that I was seeing with DTV Now were definitely not related to my Internet connection. Connectivity and speed were fine while I was experiencing problems with DTV Now, and I typically get >200Mbps downstream. The problems were varied:
    • Sometimes can't watch live TV or play content from the DVR with a "check your connection" or "boy, this is taking longer than expected..." or "please try again later" (thanks!)
    • DVR doesn't come up at all or some general UI failure. Need to restart the app.
    Here are some recent tweets with issues that I recognize:




    This was a great one, where for several days new subscribers were unable to sign up and activate service:



    When it worked it was great, but there were too many times that it either didn't work at all for stretches of time or I had to spend time troubleshooting. It's just not like the satellite DVR experience. It's also important to note that they don't (yet?) let you pause live TV. I didn't catch that when I was surveying options, and it sounds like some others do allow it by using on-device storage as a buffer. Sound quality was also poor compared to satellite and used to be only 2-channel stereo, but it looks like they've improved that recently (at least for recorded shows).

    The other annoyance is that the service has different quirks depending which device you're using for playback, and none really have the "whole package". AppleTV lets you fast forward and rewind while watching the video zoom by, but you can't (or couldn't) do a 30-second skip. It looks like it was enabled at some point, but features seem to come and go without notice. I had a better experience on Roku, where 30-second skip forward/back is available, but fast forward/rewind don't show video. Roku does have the advantage that you can program a remote shortcut to go directly into DTV Now, so it's already showing live TV when I turn on the TV (similar to regular DTV). With Apple TV, I was usually stuck at the home screen no matter what i was doing before and I had to select DTV Now manually each time. The home screen on Apple TV doesn't really lend itself to remote macros (via navigation), either.

    Like I said, they have a great channel selection for a great price (including $5 HBO), so I'm still holding out for the service to improve. I certainly encourage anyone to give it a try for 7 days to see how you like it, but please do try it on more than one device and be prepared to hang onto whatever service you have now.

    I'm actually happy that they're apparently developing their own device and I hope that that leads to a more universal and tailored experience. I imagine that some of the issues are due to limitations in the third-party devices or their remotes (looking at you, Apple), and could be rectified if they had a purpose-built device and devoted time to make it work well. As it is, they're splitting their time between lots of platforms and it shows in the maturity and speed of feature/bug fix rollouts.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2019
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  20. Feb 1, 2019 #60 of 145
    TV_Guy

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    We used to get the Yankee games on MSG but in 2002 the owner, James Dolan, got into a dispute with someone and took the Yankee games out of MSG's lineup. That's the reason I have D* today.

    We have something in common. I left Cablevision in 2002 for Directv due to the missing Yankees game on Cablevision. So a couple of weeks ago when I suspended my Directv service it seemed like the end of an era for me. It is a lot more complicated than one would suspect. Especially when you factor in streaming device incomparability with some services. But the upside is the free trials give you an opportunity for trial and error. I too thought Directv Now was the only viable solution since they were the only service with MSG, YES, SNY and ESPN. Now I'm thinking YouTube TV might do the trick. You don't know until you actually try it. You can go with different solutions during different sports seasons since there are no long term commitments. Some of the channels in the $40 YouTube TV package like FS2, Golf and CBS Sports Network are missing from the Directv Now $55 package. So if these channels are important it makes Directv Now $25 more expensive with the $65 package. The only saving grace is $5 HBO but that is not much of a bargain if the package is priced $15 or $25 more than YouTube TV.
    The roof antenna would give you subchannels. Locast only offers a few. If you are looking for a 30 day YouTube TV trial check out Roku. They have an offer tied to the activation of a new device by March 3 with the trial to start no later than March 10. With the Roku Premiere on sale for $29.99 for the Super Bowl it's a good deal.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2019

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