As more and more people cut the cable cord, cable companies, media companies and content creators alike are scrambling to make sure that those who want access to their services have it. Over the past couple of years, we've seen many examples of companies dropping their cable TV exclusivity, with Dish being one of the most notable. Last February, the Dish released a $20/mo package through Sling TV, and without much of a delay, AMC jumped on board, and so did HBO.
With that kind of content support, it's of little surprise that other big media and major carriers wants a bit of the online action as well. That includes AT&T, which has just announced that it also will be offering premium content services to those without a cable subscription. You don't even need a current AT&T product to jump on board.
If you're inclined to subscribe you're in for a bit of a wait, but in Q4 of this year, AT&T will be releasing a trio of solutions that will allow people to get DirecTV content straight to a PC, a smartphone, or a streaming device.
The top package offered will be called "DirecTV Now" and will feature all of the service's content, which includes live and on-demand programming. A second package called "DirecTV Mobile" is just as it sounds: a smartphone-specific service that will include "premium content" and youth-focused content made possible by a joint venture AT&T has with Otter Media. The third option, "DirecTV Preview," is a free ad-supported option that lets people watch original content from "AT&T Audience Network" as well as some select content from Otter Media.
At this point, we're not being given pricing information, but it's hard to imagine it will cost the same $20/mo that Dish offers with Sling TV if it's true that everything is included. DirecTV's current packages start out at $20/mo, and scale up to $90/mo.
Last summer, AT&T acquired DirecTV for a staggering $48.5 billion, so we're sure the company is anxious to capitalize on the synergies of that transaction and the combine services.