Youtube TV Price Increase

Discussion in 'Internet Streaming Services' started by b4pjoe, Jun 30, 2020.

  1. Aug 9, 2020 #81 of 185
    techguy88

    techguy88 Well-Known Member

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    YTTV is essentially turning into the optional TV product that Google Fiber used to offer with the only exception being YTTV is available on a national level and not restricted to Google Fiber's footprint.
     
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  2. Aug 9, 2020 #82 of 185
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, if anything, I see YTTV adding a few more channels than they have now so that they can fully act as a replacement for what we used to call "expanded basic cable". Hallmark, History, A&E and Lifetime are about the only top-30-most-watched channels that YTTV is missing now, so I still think it's likely that they'll eventually get added. (Maybe coinciding with next year's price increase.)

    As for the RSN business model, yeah, a lot has been written about that. Sinclair is in a parlous position with those Fox Sports RSNs they bought, plus the new Marquee channel for Cubs games that they launched. This year's shortened sports calendars don't help matters, I'm sure. It's telling that they still haven't bothered to rebrand the Fox Sports RSNs. I think their future is very much up in the air.
     
  3. Aug 9, 2020 #83 of 185
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Yup. Managed IPTV is becoming passe because it's tied to a given network footprint and proprietary hardware. Google is dumping Google Fiber TV for YouTube TV. AT&T is dumping Uverse TV for AT&T TV. T-Mobile will dump the current iteration of TVision for a new OTT, cloud-based version of the service.
     
  4. Aug 9, 2020 #84 of 185
    James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator

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    I wonder when YTTV will add tiers. Right now they are core + premiums. As they add channels they will become closer to the higher tiers of MVPDs and likely pass the lowest tiers of their competitors.
     
  5. Aug 9, 2020 #85 of 185
    wmb

    wmb Godfather

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    This is odd, as MLB on RSNs are the highest rated shows in prime time on many systems.

    2019 MLB Regional TV Ratings In Prime Time Remain Solid

    It’s strong this year as well...

    Early Regional Sports Network TV Ratings And Ad Sales For MLB Are Up Compared With 2019


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  6. Aug 9, 2020 #86 of 185
    scooper

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    I'm a Google Fiber customer, and now, since we did not have Fiber TV before they started offering the YTTV, we cannot ever subscribe to Fiber TV.

    On the positive side - when we first arrived in KC, MIL was getting the 15 Mbps down free tier. We immediately jumped to the 100 Mbps tier for $50 / month. Some time ago, Google sent out an email that they were discontinuing the 100 Mbps tier, and replacing it with 500 Mbps - for $55 / month. 1Gbps is available - for another $20 /month - but I haven't felt the need for that yet....
     
  7. Aug 10, 2020 #87 of 185
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    RSNs have relatively high carriage costs and a majority of cable subscribers don't even watch them. And consumers tend to know how much they're paying for them, as the cost is typically broken out as an itemized fee on their bill in the $7-9/mo range. It's definitely one contributor in the cord-cutting trend of ditching cable TV entirely.

    It's not that MVPDs don't want to carry RSNs, it's that they would like them to be either optional add-ons or relegated to an upper-tier channel package. The RSN owners -- now chiefly Sinclair -- of course want their channels included in the base-level mainstream package.

    Here's one particularly bearish take on the future of RSNs:

    Analyst says "best scenario" for RSNs is losing half their distribution
     
  8. Aug 10, 2020 #88 of 185
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Some have speculated that tiered channel packages are on the horizon for YTTV. When they announced their recent price hike, the blog post said they were "working to build new flexible models for YouTube TV users". So that could mean tiered packages, or a core package with various optional add-on packs. But it seems like that might require going back and renegotiating all their current carriage contracts.

    YTTV still has a ways to go before they catch up in price to comparable services from traditional MVPDs (largely thanks to the very low margin that Google takes). The closest thing Comcast offers is their Extra package, although it has a few more channels than YTTV. The regular price for it here costs an additional $83 beyond the cost of standalone broadband. (That's inclusive of the broadcast TV and RSN fees, plus DVR service with 150 hrs storage, but no STB rentals.) Of course, customers often get it for cheaper by taking an optional 1- or 2-yr contract for broadband plus TV (which YTTV obviously doesn't require or offer).
     
  9. Aug 10, 2020 #89 of 185
    lparsons21

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    I think it would definitely require doing some renegotiating contracts to split some things out into tiers.

    SlingTV has tiers now, if you get Sling Blue with their total TV bundle, the cost is $50/month. No ESPN and no locals. Broadcast shows can be gotten next day on Hulu @$6/month w/ads ($12 w/out), CBS:AA gives you live local CBS channel in most markets at the same pricing as Hulu. So out the door $62 for all of that. Higher pricing if you got Sling Gold or Sling Blue+Gold of course.

    Right now the best deal out there for those wanting a slew of channels with a good mix of types is YTTV. ATT TV Now is reasonably priced if the channel mix is right. ATT TV is not horrible if you don’t keep it past the 1st year and only want the Entertainment level. Beyond that level it isn’t competitive with anyone.
     
  10. Aug 10, 2020 #90 of 185
    grover517

    grover517 AllStar

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    I tend to feel that the term "cable replacement" isn't really relevant any longer and I prefer the term "cable alternative". I know I for one, don't want a true "replacement" service to DirecTV or Comcast. I think YTTV, even now, offers a good variety of programming at a reasonable cost. I have my own feelings about Viacom and the RSN situation but that's for another conversation.

    As for Sinclair's business model, I also agree they are in trouble in the OTT space and unless they accept to at least partially, be part of a purely premium "Sinclair" add on package like I think your referring to, where Sinclair dictates the cost and YTTV gets a cut for carriage akin to an HBO or other premium offering. Another option I suppose would be to become part of some other kind of genre specific "Sports" add on with a few others, but in that instance, they may not have as much control over what they can demand. More and more, the average sports fan like me is discovering that I can scratch my itch with what's already available on services I already have such as the major networks, ESPN, BTN and other league channels or even Amazon Prime. Personally, I can't remember the last time I actually watched a game on an RSN. I know I have but they were few and far between.
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2020
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  11. Aug 10, 2020 #91 of 185
    lparsons21

    lparsons21 Hall Of Fame

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    I’m a below average sports watcher, my son is big into sports but even he has noticed the same thing, even last year when there was plenty of live sports to watch.

    For me I can’t remember the last time I watched any RSN.
     
  12. Aug 10, 2020 #92 of 185
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    I wouldn't say that. If you can combine AT&T TV with AT&T broadband service, I *think* you get an ongoing $10/mo bundling discount. Entertainment's regular standalone price (after the first year) is $93/mo. So if the incremental ongoing price of adding it to AT&T broadband is an extra $83/mo, well that's the same as the increment price of adding Comcast's Extra package to their broadband service. Except Extra includes your RSN(s) whereas Entertainment does not. But AT&T TV, OTOH, would give you one free custom TV box while you'd have to perpetually rent X1 boxes at $5/mo each with Comcast (unless you were OK with using their free but not-very-good app for Roku, smart TVs, etc). And AT&T TV gives you 500 hours of cloud DVR storage (with a 90-day retention limit) while you're only getting 150 hours (with a 1-yr retention limit) with the price I quoted from Comcast. To increase that to 300 hours costs an extra $10/mo. Lastly, AT&T TV has WAY better HD picture quality than Comcast.

    It seems to me that AT&T and Comcast have sized each other up pretty well. Which makes sense because they are each other's most common direct competitor.
     
  13. Aug 10, 2020 #93 of 185
    lparsons21

    lparsons21 Hall Of Fame

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    OK, I stand corrected, they aren’t competition to other streaming services beyond the Entertainment level.
     
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  14. Aug 10, 2020 #94 of 185
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    No, definitely not. It would be nice for consumers if AT&T decided to compete on price with YTTV and Hulu Live but of course their shareholders would rightfully be up in arms. Unlike those streaming upstarts, AT&T has a big, established, profitable cable TV business to monetize as best they can for as long as they can. They're not going to set fire to it by taking their margins down to $4 per month per subscriber, as YTTV reportedly earns. (That said, I did expect the pricing for AT&T TV to be at least a bit lower than it is based on repeated remarks from AT&T's CEO about the new platform's much lower customer acquisition costs. Oh well.)
     
  15. Aug 10, 2020 #95 of 185
    lparsons21

    lparsons21 Hall Of Fame

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    I’ve thought about what it might take to keep me from cancelling ATT TV at the end of the year.

    Here’s where the finances fall:
    Currently Entertainment @$50/month with HBO Max

    At the end of the year HBO Max drops off and the price for the sub goes to $93/month and if I want to keep HBO Max, which is highly likely, the total then is $108. That ain’t happening!

    If I can get Entertainment in 2nd year for $65, add in HBO Max for $15 bringing total to $80/month, then I’m more likely than not to keep the service. That is because it really is a good service. Still the only one with 5.1 audio, probably the best video quality of any streamer and the box, for all its warts, has some benefit, but even not considering the box, that price seems a fair trade-off for me.

    Or I could go to Sling Blue w/Total TV add on for $50/month and have most of the channels I want. Or get YTTV @$65/month and have them all. In both cases a bit less video quality, a bit less convenient and no DD5.1 audio.
     
  16. Aug 10, 2020 #96 of 185
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like you have a plan and a price point in mind to propose to them when you call up to potentially cancel. Of course, if you do cancel, you'll have to pay an ETF of $180 (12 x $15), right?

    Has DTV ever negotiated on pricing for customers still under their original contract? I don't think so. So I'd be surprised if they offer you a discount on the second year. Or if they do, I doubt they knock off 30% of the price and take it all the way down to $65/mo. But, hey, never hurts to ask if you're willing to walk away...
     
  17. Aug 10, 2020 #97 of 185
    lparsons21

    lparsons21 Hall Of Fame

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    Yeah, ETF is figured in. If I cancel the true cost of my $50/month sub is a shade under $57/month because of the $100 rebate.

    And yes, DTV has negotiated with me in the past during contract. Generally not big ones, but what the hell? If I don’t ask I sure won’t get a discount. I’m betting that the sub losses as people’s 1-year anniversary comes around are going to be worse than D*’s.
     
  18. Aug 11, 2020 #98 of 185
    crkeehn

    crkeehn Godfather

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    If one has ATT Fiber 1000, the old Gigapower; then HBO Max is included for free. With the unlimited data and free HBO Max, Fiber 1000 is looking even more attractive.

    To fill my viewing out, Youtube TV, even with the price increase; is appealing. Luckily they provide the Raleigh NC area with the local sports channel so I can keep up with the Canes. They also provide the ACC network, which might be useful someday.
     
  19. Aug 12, 2020 #99 of 185
    lparsons21

    lparsons21 Hall Of Fame

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    Let’s put the YTTV current pricing in perspective. YTTV is one of the 3 services that come closest to being an actual cable/sat replacement service.

    YTTV @$65/month is a relative bargain in this segment. Hulu+Live in a configuration closest to what YTTV offers costs $71/month and can only be used in the same house. ATT TV’s (not Now) closest subscription level to it is Xtra and that costs $124/month at retail though 1st year discounts are available to new subscribers.

    And I would argue that combining some skinny bundle services together to cover the same things would cost at least $65/month but most likely more. The only way to get away with paying less is to not have some channels you might otherwise want.
     
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  20. techguy88

    techguy88 Well-Known Member

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    It is possible but the offers are generally not as good as non-contract customers. My mother was able to get $20 off for 12 months during the second year of her initial 2-year contract. After she was out of contract the amount of discounts she has received has been within the $35 - $45 range. (They have offered her up to $65 off for 12 months but I tell her not to accept the highest discount on purpose as other people in her area gets the max offer then has no discounts the following year.) Due to the trees my mom is actually in a spot where D* can get a clear line of sight but E* does not. o_O Since my mom and grandma don't watch sports the Preferred Xtra package is best for them.
     

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