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Inside Charlie's Brain - what's he planning?

Discussion in 'General DISH™ Discussion' started by phrelin, Apr 29, 2011.

  1. phrelin

    phrelin Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

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    Northern...
    Richard Greenfield of the investment firm BTIG on Tuesday posted a report titled Inside Charlie’s Brain: Accepting the Eventual Death of Linear TV and Laying the Groundwork to Reinvent DISH.

    It's one very-well-informed person's "big picture" view of what Dish is doing which begins with Charlies response to a question in DISH’s Q3 2010 conference call. It's a long post but worth reading as it offers a comprehensive explanation for the various pieces of the puzzle we've been discussing in various threads (spectrum acquisition, Blockbuster acquisition, dropping sports channels, giving away premium movie channels, staying away from sub growth just to grow subs).

    Thursday's The Morning Bridge from MediaBiz offered up this summary:
    Near the end of the analysis, Greenfield comments:
    He doesn't discuss the Sling acquisition which was on the Echostar side, but it also fits into a broader picture.

    With regard to sports, IMHO Charlie isn't dropping sports but rather only contracting for sports programming that is purchased separately.

    I'm going to be curious what he will do with the Disney folks at contract renewal time when Disney will be pressing for a 100% price increase for the ESPN stuff charged to every customer which is already too expensive for the cash-strapped portion of the population.

    Of course, Disney will try to leverage the Disney Channel if they notice that Charlie isn't big on making all his customers pay exorbitant fees for ESPN. It's hard to imagine a model without the Disney channel, but then again my 8-year-old granddaughter quit watching TV - she watches streaming video on a computer and other devices. Apparently this is not unusual, according to the Nielsen folks who report that not only do they watch on computer but tell us younger consumers ages 12-17 are the heaviest mobile video viewers.

    Certainly Comcast (you remember them, the folks that bought a 51% interest in NBCU) is focusing their efforts on streaming and on-demand and "Comcast on the Go" (yeah, I know I should be using "Xfinity", but to me they're Comcast). Comcast, of course, is "the cable company" much like there used to be "the phone company." So to a degree, they can charge families more without too much subscriber loss.

    Anyway, it's interesting to see an analysis of what's going on inside Charlie's brain with regard to the future of Dish.
     
  2. jacmyoung

    jacmyoung Hall Of Fame

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    The analyst missed one thing but you picked it up yourself without knowing it, Charlie also mentioned how his kids now get to watch those shows and other media.
     
  3. Wilf

    Wilf Legend

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    When we "baby sit" our grandkids, they now choose Netflix on our TV over any cable channel. The have no trouble navigating the GoogleTV remote. Yes, it is a brand new world for TV. A much better one.
     
  4. SayWhat?

    SayWhat? Know Nothing

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  5. phrelin

    phrelin Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

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    That story would seem to support what Greenfield thinks Charlie's focusing in on. Plus, we had Kaufman Bros' Todd Mitchell speculative comment:
    We know Charlie's not into "wired" infrastructure. (He let's me deal with my ISP, Comcast, on that.) There's really three things affecting cable/telcom wired infrastructure: telephone, "cable" TV, and internet. What we know about Echostar and Dish within that framework plus wireless is:
    • Charlie doesn't sell telephone service, at least yet.
    • He now sells satellite internet services via the Hughes acquisition by Echostar.
    • He's acquired or acquiring all that wireless spectrum and some infrastructure.
    • Related to the internet, Echostar owns Sling which via Dish allows you access through the internet to whatever you get via your 722/722k/922; has a specific arrangement with Google TV as an internet portal from your 722/722k/922; offers DISH Online and HBO/MAX GO.
    • PPV/VOD is handled on the ViP DVRs via satellite.
    • He bought Blockbuster.
    It's pretty clear Charlie intends to get a meaningful piece of the action shown in the chart in the ars technica story linked above by SayWhat?:

    [​IMG]
     
  6. sigma1914

    sigma1914 Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

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    25% Other = Porn :lol: (It should be higher.)
     
  7. SayWhat?

    SayWhat? Know Nothing

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    Well, it would be, but that's where a lot of the malware is embedded. (I won't make the Trojan pun)
     
  8. kc1ih

    kc1ih Legend

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    The title of this thread made me think of Charlie Sheen, and my reaction was “what brain?”. :lol:
     
  9. phrelin

    phrelin Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

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    Yeah, that was a dilemma for me when I titled the thread. But the article title was just too good not to use that part of it.
     
  10. phrelin

    phrelin Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

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    I would have to say that today really is Charlie's 21st Century "first day of the rest of his life" after seeing these news releases:
    I mean, what we have is:
    • Dish not only has a 5.5% increase in revenue but gained a net of 58 [strike]million[/strike] oops, thousand subscribers in a recession proving its current marketing strategy.
    • Dish is borrowing some cash to implement its future strategy.
    • Charlie has appointed someone with solid marketing and management experience to manage the Blockbuster acquisition.
    • Charlie has settled with TiVo in what appears to be a fair licensing deal, allowing him to move on (and also sell TiVo boxes in Blockbuster outlets).
    This is a rather momentous day for Charlie.
     
  11. phrelin

    phrelin Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

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    From Bloomberg:
     
  12. dgordo

    dgordo Hall Of Fame

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    Gained 58 million subscribers?
     
  13. sigma1914

    sigma1914 Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

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    That's a lot...58,000 is realistic. ;)
     
  14. phrelin

    phrelin Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

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    Thanks, I've corrected it. I get so used to seeing trillions and billions, that millions seems like a low number.:eek:
     
  15. James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    I'm surprised that it wasn't another negative 100k+ subscribers. Hopefully all the things Charlie is doing will combine to improve the satellite company.
     
  16. phrelin

    phrelin Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

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    I was as surprised as you were.

    Charlie seems pretty realistic. In the Bloomberg story regarding the Blockbuster deal, they report:
    That story also noted that Charlie also has acquired:
    • DBSD North America Inc., a provider of voice and data services over satellite;
    • Hughes Communications, giving Dish the ability to offer broadband services; and,
    • Move Networks Inc., which makes technology for streaming video online.
    As the bits and pieces come in, such as Charlie mentioning the studios liking Blockbuster having some stores, it seems like a picture is forming. Now whether it works out, no one knows. But it looks solid to me.
     
  17. BobaBird

    BobaBird EKB Editor

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    The picture of Blockbuster stores may turn into more of a doodle, as they mentioned only about 370 of the 1700(?) locations are profitable.
     
  18. lparsons21

    lparsons21 Hall Of Fame

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    Why surprised? Dish is selling a solid product for a competitive price. Their HDDVRs are rock solid, they have a good channel lineup available and their customer service is easier to deal with more often than not.

    From the average consumer viewpoint, the big difference is the sports or lack of.

    On customer service, the reason I say they are easier to deal with is that in nearly all cases, I can contact tech/customer service/sales via online chat which helps ensure the a mis-communication occurs less often.

    I have many friends that have one or the other service and when I bring up some of the issues discussed here, I find that virtually none of them care a whole lot about what we discuss here that seem so compelling to us. They care that the system works, has the channels they want and pay a reasonable bill. They don't get humped up over what is missing in HD, nor any of the 'apps'.

    In general, they've stayed with whichever provider they are with for quite some time. In fact, the only time I've seen much in the way of switching was for locals via SAT changes and even then, not nearly as often as discussions here would indicate.
     
  19. koralis

    koralis Godfather

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    A couple of tricks not mentioned so far...


    1) the Blockbuster deal allows Charlie access to a contract allowing him to stream movies at rates that are FAR better than he's gotten before (no doubt!)


    2) The new tivo settlement had some interesting language in it that suggests that echostar can make DVRs to service Dish, but that Tivo would be making equipment for other markets that are dish-compatible. I forget the exact jargon they used, but I read it as "Dish can make DVRs for Sat/Streaming. Tivo will be making the standalone Streaming devices."


    3) The Blockbuster deal helps Charlie get a foot in the door for A-la-cart. He'll already be serving movies as one-ups. If the service is big enough then it gives him extra negotiating power to do individual episodes, seasons of an episode like iTunes does or individual channels unbundled from packages. TV producers are greedy. If doing the deal nets them more revenue they'll talk.
     

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