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Discussion in 'DIRECTV Programming' started by sticketfan, May 18, 2012.
There will be more programming on each PAC-2 network than a lot of the other full time regular rsns.
Again taking the Los Angeles market as an example, Time Warner Cable and Cox will carry the main network, and at least 1, maybe 2 of the sub networks. Thus, they will carry any non-games programming that is about USC and UCLA.
It might become a question of whether that programming is important enough. Also, there is way more sports programming than just the football games, all other sports are covered, plus they probably do re-runs of events that conflict with more popular events.
Another thing to consider is that they already have contracts with a number of large cable providers, and thus they probably already have feeds setup and ready to go to go to commercial satellites that cable companies can pick up, decrypt with the code PAC12 will supply, and redistribute accordingly. This is the easiest way of distributing a channel from its source, to a large number of cable providers. So the feeds are probably already up and running (or close to being ready, but commercial satellite space has already been secured) and setting up any other type of feed might not be so easy.
Honestly I don't know if this already is being done with other RSN's, e.g. where cable carries the FULL network, and DirecTV carries *only* the important games on a sub-channel. I would imagine this already exists in some for or capacity, but is PAC12 set up for it from a technical point of view?
DirecTV of course still has about a month and a half left of negotiating, some testing to ensure stuff works before they have to launch anything, and they can probably miss 2 weeks of play before people really start to freak out.... but regardless of how they do it, I think knowing the market for USC/UCLA sports, they pretty much have no choice but to carry the games at the very least.
also other thing about that is with Directv you get all teams that you are in area for VS just having your local full feed.
Why would PAC12 even care about satellite bandwidth? They know just as much as we do that DirecTV will launch a bunch more bandwidth in 2014, and they know just as much as we do that DirecTV currently has the bandwidth - and then some - to carry all 7 HD channels of the PAC12.
They can distribute them like cable if you like, e.g. you only get the channels of your region if you live in certain zipcodes, just like the RSN system works, and I think 99% of viewers would be perfectly fine. As long as they can watch the channel their local teams are on, plus some of the national programming, they will be happy.
The customer doesn't care about bandwidth. PAC12 doesn't care about bandwidth. Only DirecTV would care about it as this point, and even they might decide to push other HD expansion off to 2014 to place these stations on their lineup. And at that point only a few DBSTalk forum visitors will be freaking out that now THEY might not get their basic HD.
It will come down to customer losses. Which scenario will retain the most customers vs how much bandwidth and money it costs to get these channels launched. They may find a middle road here, and launch just the most 2 important markets (probably L.A. and Bay Area) along with the main network, and perhaps lose some customers in Oregon, Arizona or elsewhere, and call it a compromise.
2 important questions:
- How much customers would we lose if we do not get PAC12?
- How much customers would we lose if we DO get PAC12 and push some other plans until we figure out how to squeeze more bandwidth on satellites?
It is said that the current bandwidth (which is about 12-15 slots according to current maps of Sixto) could be expanded to as much as 30 to 40 with 6 HD per transponder instead of 5, so they may have to go that route.
In any case, it will come down to basics, and not basic HD for that matter:
Which scenario retains and/or makes the most money.
Yeah. Cause a wise business shouldn't give a damn about its potential partners capabilities and processes. Right.
I'm just saying they, as a business, would probably not make their decision on whether to ask DirecTV should host all 7 channels based on whether OTHER businesses need that same bandwidth. We all know they can place all 7 channels right now if they wanted to, it would just leave less bandwidth for other projects.
DirecTV can handle it all from a technology point of view, and a bandwidth point of view. It's just that DirecTV may or may not choose to keep bandwidth for other ongoing negotiations and projects. As I said, in the end it is all about the bottom line. Losing customers is really bad for the bottom line, but so is paying too much for television carriage rights. So they'll have to find a middle ground somewhere, but I would think that the potential loss of customers is a heavy weight on the decision making.
Since almost *no one* leaves DirecTV for say.... basic HD, they can easily shove that off to the back burner, and maybe add 1 HD if they start getting some feedback from CS reps that people are cancelling in particular for that HD station.
DirecTV's focus will remain on sports I believe, and I continue to believe that adding these stations, along with TWC's Sportsnet stations, are going to be MORE important to DirecTV's bottom line than adding any other HD. At least, THIS year. What the future may bring, who knows..... but it is quite possible that with 6 HD per transponder, we'll see all of this sports action PLUS basic/movie HD as well.
We'll see what happens.... but the Los Angeles market is extremely important to DirecTV, and losing USC and UCLA games of any kind.... is not a very wise business choice.
If they had to pick between 7 basic HD, and these 7 stations, purely from a business point of view, picking up PAC12 is the wiser choice. I would rather have the 7 basic HD, but I understand the importance of these schools, especially in a large urban area as Greater Los Angeles.
- How will the cost of these new sports networks affect the rates we charge customers and will this have a negative impact on churn?
I would agree that not having some of these new sports nets may cause customers to leave Directv, but raising prices to cover the cost of these new channels may also cause loss of subscribers. It all has to be balanced out.
Sports-focused subscribers may be profitable, but I don't think Directv wants higher rates chase off other customer segments.
That is definitely a good question. Rates usually increase yearly, with a few dollars or so. Mostly, these rate increases are to off-set programming costs.
It would be nice that, probably besides ESPN due to contracts and whatnot, DirecTV would offer a "sportless" package that didn't include any sport. I know there is the "Entertainment" package, but it doesn't include some of the other Choice channels. On the other hand, I also have NO problem with the PAC12 being in the Sports Package, so subscribers can choose whether they want to pay for it.
Of course right now most schools have broadcasted their games via a local RSN, which comes with the cheapest Choice package. Putting it in a higher tier or sports tier might piss some people off, but at least their local teams would be available, and it will help DirecTV with the cost of the 7 channels.
As I said before, I really could care less about anything football or basketball, whether pro or college, so none of these channels, nor the TWC Sportsnet channels interest me. (I would miss L.A. Galaxy games, but I wouldn't switch TV provider for it). But I do understand the magnitude of not carrying these networks, and I would also understand why my Choice Ultimate rates would be going up (again) next year. Although those two sports don't interest me, I do care about Hockey, Baseball, and Soccer. So I like certain sports. So a "sportless" package won't do it for me, and I have been debating signing up for the sports package.... if Universal Sports goes HD before the winter sports season (I also love speed skating, bobsledding, and other winter sports) and DirecTV decides to carry it, that might be a very compelling reason for me to get the sports package. It might very well be that carrying PAC12 in the sports package, will be a wise financial decision, as those interested in the teams AND wanting to keep DirecTV might want to pay the $11 a month extra.
It will be interesting to see how much content will be on these networks. I wonder if 4 schools per regional network would have been a better plan: Northwest, California, Mountain.
Yeah that would probably have been better. I guess they still could change it to that, but as of this moment all 7 networks are in place, and carried by cable companies, albeit on a local scale for the local networks.
There is also still 1 cable company that needs to get on board. Charter is the biggest cable operator in Southern Oregon for the UOO, and their Ducks football games WILL air on the LOCAL network for that region.
Houston is a top 10 DMA and is the 5th largest metro area.
Always funny to see the spin from the PAC-12 apologists/fanboys.
For the record let me state up front, I hope D adds the main net plus all the sub feeds. That's because I'm a huge spots fan.
Business wise though IMO it's highly doubtful D will add all 7 feeds.
This myth though that the PAC 12 Network is some kind of Game Changer is precisely that a myth.
One only needs to look at Tv ratings and History to see the PAC 12 trails appreciably in that area. Large cities be damned.
PAC 12 trails substanitally behind the SEC in talent, fanbase and TV ratings. The trail the Big Ten . They trail other power confernces besides the SEC in passion and Tv ratings.
In summary I hope D adds all sports nets. PAC 12(especially the sub feeds) isn't today and likely won't be any time in the near future any type of difference maker or deal breaker. Overhype, overplayed by it's supporters much like the LHN was.
I just want the main channel. There's no viable reason for every subfeed...and I love the University of Arizona.
Won't all the important and big football games be on ABC/ESPN, still? Who cares about watching Colorado play Wazzou in a snoozer? As long as games like Oregon/USC are on.
So where is this big bandwidth boost going to be located? Are they not already using all their licensed transponders at the current locations?
Yup, not ever carrying the YES network has sure put good Ole Dishnetwork out of business. Oh wait I saw reports here that they had a net subscriber gain last quarter.
I'm only guessing here but when the YES network was formed and dish didn't carry it, I'd be willing to bet it cost them less in lost subscribers and future adds than the cost of carrying it.
From what I know, MANY of the games in the first three weeks (thats all that has been released so far) will be on these "regional" PAC12 networks.
There will be 4 national games in the opening weekend, on Fox and ESPN. The rest will air on regional networks of PAC12. Fox and ESPN won't have the same schools each week as the season progresses, so those wanting to see ALL games of THEIR school, will need access to PAC12 networks.
Out of the 25 home games in the first three weeks, 15 will be broadcast on PAC12 networks, and 10 national on Fox and ESPN/ABC.
The bigger problem is not individual viewers really.... but Sports Bars. If THEY can't get whatever local team is playing, they are going to find service with those who can, and currently that is some of the cable providers. They don't need access to ALL games either, but they do need access to ALL HOME TEAM games, and without getting PAC-12.... that is not going to happen. And if they can drop some sports coverage with DirecTV, and move it to TWC or other cable providers, that will hurt DirecTV's business.
First, how do you know the passion of the fans for the schools is any different. I doubt it is. The difference is there are a lot more people around that don't care about it than do, but that's not the same thing at all.
There are a lot more things to doing Los Angeles than a lot of others places, so that has some affect on just how big ratings are, etc. Also, I think that part of the point of these channels is to increase their presence so that they can increase their ratings. In Los Angeles at least, they will not have to compete for air time for programs for the schools with 9 other professional sports teams that take up air time. That's why some consider this a game changer.
Others say it because this whole thing is a lot bigger in other ways. The pac12 will be streaming everything all over the world, so people will have access anywhere. Also,they will now own the rights to all their games. That's also a big deal. That's what's game changing about this deal, and I assure you that the sec and others will move to that as well, where they will want control of everything, and digital broadcasts of everything too. That is a huge deal. In fact, I'd say that's bigger than the actual broadcast channels.
Everyone in Colorado will be ticked. That will likely happen at least once to every school, and that's why this is a big deal for football. But after football, not so sure it will matter much.
Read the "technical discussion" topic. Looks like there were some unused transponders that have been freed up.
Not carrying PAC12 will not put DirecTV out of business either. Thing is, Dish Network never *HAD* YES to begin with, so Yankee fans would not have chosen Dish from the get-go.
Dish also was never focused on sports customers, where DirecTV's main focus is sports customers, among which the VAST majority of sports bars in the United States.
In any case.... I agree, it won't put DirecTV out of business. But they will lose a hell of a lot of customers in the Greater Los Angeles area, where USC Football is king over any NFL team.
At last count, it appears DIRECTV has the room to add around 40 full time Hi Definition conus channels. They have begun doing some upgrades and are now getting six channels per transponder vs five on some, plus they have two full transponders that are not broadcasting anything that they appear to be using as they maneuver things around. There is plenty of room, if DIRECTV is willing to spend the money to upgrade that many encoders to get to six per transponder without loosing pq. So the room is there without question for these channels, at a min ten channels right now this second without even doing upgrades. The question is how much will DIRECTV be willing to spend to make all the necessary upgrades to get a ton more space, if they haven't already. We don't even know for sure what they have and have not done in this regard. The key is, it's possible without launching a new sat from a technical standpoint, it appears. Then it's all down to cash.
I would not be surprised if DIRECTV wants the pac12 to pay for new encoders for their channels in exchange for all channels and a sweet deal on a long term contract. Tat might make sense for them.
The LA area cares soooo much about its local sports that the Coliseum was a ghost town when USC was not winning.
I'm done with this topic. The PAC 12, if it insists on seven fulltime channels is being stupid and I seriously doubt that DirecTV would want to waste that much bandwidth on it. Despite there being some space right now, bandwidth is still a precious commodity.
We have a few west coasters here making the PAC 12 and its network out to be the be-all end-all. They are not. While the PAC 12 is a successful conference, it does not stand head and shoulders above the others.