As more and more cable TV providers are now trying to attract cord cutters, AT&T® has also added many local broadcast channels to their DirecTV Now® streaming TV service. This means that some subscribers of the DirecTV Now® service starting at thirty-five dollars a month will be able to watch local broadcast stations in their area to enjoy the local offerings. The DirecTV Now® service will add thirty more ABC local affiliate channels in the cities like Dallas, Atlanta, and Boston. It is reported that four more NBC stations and Fox affiliate in Juneau will also be offered.
After the addition of the local channels, DirecTV® said that their local offerings would now cover about seventy percent of the households. According to Daniel York, who is the chief content office of AT&T®, the local lineup is now double of what was offered when the service was launched back in November and it will be tripled by the end of August. “We are pleased to add additional content to the DirecTV Now® offering by more than doubling our live local channels lineup today. We will keep the momentum going, and have plans to keep the number of local channels growing on DirecTV Now®,” York said.
With the additions of the local channels, DirecTV Now® has more than doubled their local broadcast footprint since the launch of the service. However, CBS is still absent from the channel lineup of DirecTV Now®. CBS offers their own over the top service named, CBS All Access® that is available in almost all the US markets for six dollars per month.
When asked about the absence of CBS channels, John Stankey, who is the CEO of AT&T® Entertainment group said, “When you look at the demographic we’re going after… there is not going to be one single network that is the reason [consumers] won’t subscribe. Whether they can get CBS primetime shows is not going to be a determining factor.”
DirecTV Now® service from AT&T® and other services like YouTube TV® from Google®, and Sling TV® from Dish Network® have been offering many traditional cable channels to the subscribers who wish to avoid the set top box to enjoy video over the internet. However, adding the local channels has been challenging, as many of these channels are owned by broadcast businesses that see DirecTV Now® as a competitor.
The number of users who drop traditional cable TV to go for streaming offerings of various internet providers has increased much. However, AT&T® will have to find a balance between promoting internet TV and pay TV services, as they are the largest pay TV provider and one of the best internet providers in the country.