AT&T has announced that its online TV streaming service, DirectTV Now, will come with over 100 channels and will cost $35 a month. The service that is launching next month will include channels from Disney and Time Warner.
DirectTV Now was first announced back in March and it is said to allow subscribers to stream television channels online from their smartphones, tablets, PCs, smart TVs and other compatible devices, according to The Verge. The service has also been described as pay TV in the form of an app.
Although AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson has confirmed that it will have over 100 channels, the company has not disclosed a full list of specific channels just yet. Nonetheless, it is already expected to include channels from NBCUniversal, Fox and others. He also said that the service would eventually be supported by AT&T’s 5G network, which he said would soon be an alternative to home broadband networks.
The $35 a month plan will also include unlimited mobile data allowing AT&T customers to stream shows on the go without worrying about data caps, according to BGR. The price tag also puts DirectTV Now in direct competition with rival services such as Sling, which starts at $20 per month for 50 channels, and Sony’s PlayStation Vue, which starts at $40 for at least 60 channels.
“How do you get to a $35 price point? The way you get there is you don’t have a satellite dish on your roof, don’t have technicians coming to your house, don’t have an expensive set top box. Just go to the Internet," Stephenson said, according to Forbes.
Overall, DirectTV Now appears to cater mostly to consumers who currently don’t pay or don’t want to pay for traditional cable TV bundles which can be much more expensive. AT&T also confirmed that DirectTV Now won’t lock in customers for an annual contract.
Last week, AT&T agreed to buy Time Warner for more than $80 billion, as per the Wall Street Journal. If the deal pushes through, AT&T would own all of Time Warner’s properties that include HBO, CNN, Warner Bros. and even the rights to DC Comics. The merger is expected to be heavily scrutinized by regulators as the deal may hurt consumers due to AT&T having a monopoly over multiple industries.