Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Is a la Carte TV Coming?

In the TV content world, it is getting expensive. The cable TV rate increases are contributing to cord cutting. Add in that there isn't much on the 500 channels you pay for to get the 10 that you watch, and people are cutting the cable cost out of their lives.

Non-cable providers are shifting how they offer TV. Many smaller telcos offer Roku boxes. I haven't seen a Netflix-Roku-Broadband bundle yet. Netflix has been added to a few providers as a channel. AT&T has a bundle of U-Verse broadband, HBO and Amazon Prime for $39. DirecTV let's you buy NFL Sunday Ticket without the satellite dish.

"Lowell McAdam, the chief executive of Verizon Communications, recently signaled his company’s acceptance of a la carte by announcing the launch of an Internet-based TV service that would offer greater programming flexibility than any other pay-TV provider." [Richmond Times-Dispatch] McAdam ruins it with his next sentence: "No one wants to have 300 channels on your wireless." But then McAdam is CEO of VZ after being in charge of VZW. He is a cell-head, not a Bell-head. He thinks everything interesting is mobile. He does continue with: "Everyone understands it will go to a la carte. The question is what does that transition look like."

One thing is do the content providers like Disney/ABC/ESPN, Fox/NewsCorp, TW/Turner allow OTT or a la carte? They have been bundling channels for a few years to insure that the crappy channels still make money. Without bundling, crappy channels may die. Considering that I mainly watch ABC, CBS, Fox, CW and USA and sports, I couldn't careless if E!, MTV and the rest fo teh Reality TV channels died. As a society we would be better off.

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