Years and Years (of Pay TV Industry Predictions)

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by NashGuy, Jul 14, 2019.

  1. Jul 26, 2019 #81 of 373
    Adam C.

    Adam C. Active Member

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    That's what I'm thinking too. Even at only $6/month the choices there seem underwhelming. This is a service I would get for my kids (not something I'm interested in), but with those choices I'm only seeing a handful of movies they would be interested in. This is not something I'll be subscribing to on Day 1. I'll see how it all plays out into early next year...
     
  2. Jul 26, 2019 #82 of 373
    trip1eX

    trip1eX Well-Known Member

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    I'm skeptical too. And that link of yours makes me more skeptical. It just doesn't strike as something that I would continually pay for. I didn't even watch most of that content when it was and in some cases still is on netflix and cable.

    But I do see the young kids angle.
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2019
  3. Jul 26, 2019 #83 of 373
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Maybe you guys missed the big dog-and-pony show that Disney did for the media and Wall Street back in the spring, but they affirmed that the entire Disney movie vault* will eventually show up and reside permanently on Disney+. Everything won't be there on day 1, but they'll get added in the weeks and months following.

    *OK, not Song of the South. So almost everything.
     
  4. Jul 26, 2019 #84 of 373
    trip1eX

    trip1eX Well-Known Member

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    I think that's the main reason why they are losing a ton of subscribers compared to cable.

    Obviously streaming is making both lose customers, but surprised satellite (DTV at least) was losing them so much faster.
     
  5. Jul 26, 2019 #85 of 373
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Well, as I said, Comcast is also focusing on only retaining their more profitable video customers too. From a story yesterday about Comcast's 2Q results announcement:

    More importantly from the company's perspective, video ARPU increased by 1.3%, as the operator, like a growing number of its peers, continues to shift its focus from low-margin to high-margin customers.

    "We'll continue to emphasize our approach to this segment," said Comcast Cable President and CEO Dave Watson. "We're not going to chase the low end."


    And yet DirecTV is bleeding subs at a far higher rate than Comcast. It's been going on a long time now. In just 2Q 19 alone, AT&T's "premium" TV services (DTV + Uverse TV) lost a whopping 778k subs while Comcast TV lost 224k. (And AT&T has only slightly more total video subs than Comcast.) So there must be other differentiating factors at play, and those are what I spelled out in detail earlier.
     
  6. Jul 26, 2019 #86 of 373
    trip1eX

    trip1eX Well-Known Member

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    Yeah but the ability of cable to offer other services has been a thing for a long time. That isn't new. DTV only started losing subs in 2017. Cable has packaged broadband and voice with video for over 15 years now.


    Also just showing Comcast's video ARPU increase without showing DTV's doesn't show us that Comcast is doing just as much as DTV to shift its focus to high margin subscribers from low margin.
     
  7. Jul 26, 2019 #87 of 373
    aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

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    I get them from Ebay. The last time I got around $400 worth of Netflix gift cards for around $200. Then applied them to my Netflix account. I currently have around a $250 balance left on my Netflix account. So I'm still good for around 14 months of the UHD service.
     
  8. Jul 26, 2019 #88 of 373
    trip1eX

    trip1eX Well-Known Member

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    ok. how do you do that? the only thing I see on Ebay is for $3 I can get told how to get (netflix) gift cards for 50% off. :)
     
  9. Jul 26, 2019 #89 of 373
    NashGuy

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    DTV and DISH are more hurt by cord-cutting than are broadband operators who can also bundle in (at reduced prices) their cable TV service. If a consumer is going to shift over to streaming video, whether a vMVPD like YouTube TV or just OTT SVODs like Netflix and Hulu, he still needs broadband. So if he's getting both TV and broadband from Comcast and he's thinking of cutting the cord, he may not be able to make a clean break from Comcast since he'd still need them for broadband. And for a lot of folks, when they do the math, they wouldn't save that much by shifting to a vMVPD plus standalone broadband (plus possible data cap fees) vs. just keeping their current cable TV and broadband. For many, the hassles wouldn't be worth the modest savings.

    But if you're already getting standalone TV via satellite and standalone broadband via cable, well, the psychology and the math are different. It's just easier to dump satellite TV.
     
  10. Jul 26, 2019 #90 of 373
    Adam C.

    Adam C. Active Member

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    Yes I'm well aware of what they said they are going to do. That's why I said I will wait and see how everything plays out. It could take months or even years for everything to get added, and there could be price increases during that time. I don't see this as something I would need on Day 1 given the current list of programming.
     
  11. Jul 26, 2019 #91 of 373
    trip1eX

    trip1eX Well-Known Member

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    I don't buy it. I think DTV is discounting much less and that's why people are leaving more than cable.

    I always figured DTV was higher priced than cable and thus a DTV sub was already paying more than cable. And they didn't care. They liked DTV.

    Why would they leave to go to an OTT service if the price isn't really less than cable which they never got before because they liked DTV more?

    And if they were on DTV because they kept getting promotional rates that kept it competitive with cable then the only reason they would leave at a rate higher than those leaving cable would be if those discounts went away.

    Or so it seems to me.

    I mean the whole bundling thing for cable has been there for a long time. As I see it those on DTV chose DTV despite that.

    IT's all related though. I mean if cable isn't as dramatically taking away the discounts that DTV is then it is obviously related to the fact their fixed costs are ~half-covered by broadband subscribers. And thus there isn't that churn in the comcast subscribers as DTV subscribers.

    Also feel like the merger is a part of the difference. DTV got bought by ATT about 3 years ago. I'm sure that change has affected customers and perhaps not for the better. Perhaps the DTV service is worse than it was. I did read few things mentioning the satisfaction rate for DTV has dropped. Not sure if that has continued into 2019 or not. I imagine not offering discounts to keep long time customers wouldn't help that.
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2019
  12. Jul 26, 2019 #92 of 373
    Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

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    In terms of pricing, bandwidth caps are going to become a bigger concern in many parts of the country. A 1TB data limit that looks massive a couple of years ago is going to be pretty tight when streaming from multiple services that are going to increasingly replace cable/satellite and disc-based media. Add in digital distribution of games to consoles and/or Google's Stadia or similar systems, and those caps are going to be a drag on the entire digital streaming market. The caps, along with lack of broadband access, upgrades, upstream speeds, and competition are also going to continue to be a drag on a lot of cloud storage, backup, security (camera), and other IoT applications.

    Amazon partnering with PS Vue could be really interesting, as they already have a lot of tie-in. That would be the last missing piece now that Amazon has Channels, Prime, and PPV all through the same interface and the same little Amazon world. I think Amazon might be one of the most interesting players, especially since they've shown a willingness to sell the hardware around or maybe even below cost in order to get it out there and get people into their ecosystem.
     
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  13. Jul 26, 2019 #93 of 373
    aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

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    When I got them earlier this year there were a bunch of sellers with Netflix gift cards for 30%, 40%, and 50% off. I guess things have changed? Or maybe they only show up during certain times of the year?
     
  14. Jul 26, 2019 #94 of 373
    MizzouJames

    MizzouJames Active Member

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    The Disney service will be huge.. someone said that they now have half of the top 50 most popular movies ever. They have alot more superhero movies coming plus superhero TV shows, plus star wars movies and shows. Plus Pixar movies, don't forget!
     
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  15. Jul 26, 2019 #95 of 373
    Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

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    The part your skirt around is that both AT&T and Comcast are selling their video services at or near cost in broadband bundles. So yes, it does go back to their broadband footprint, and AT&T has a lot of existing DirecTV customers outside of their footprint where DirecTV is priced for a ~50% profit margin, not a near-zero profit margin like it is when bundled with broadband within their 21-state territory (and certain MDUs outside of that). Comcast is also bundling TV at a near zero profit margin, as it also reduces their churn, and they still get upwards of $90/mo in most areas for broadband, which is 90%+ profit.

    The discounts ending certainly has an effect, as does cord cutting in general, but the ability to bundle broadband is the single overarching driving force in the subscriber number statistics. Straggling DSL customers are retiring, dying off, or moving to cable, and in the process, if they're not cutting the cord, they are moving to cable TV alongside their cable broadband, which is offsetting the cord cutting losses, and effectively net concentrating almost all of the cord cutting losses on the satellite side. Like DirecTV's huge customer gains as AT&T moved people from U-Verse to DirecTV after their merger, this shift from satellite to cable is a fundamentally unsustainable trend, however, as eventually cord cutting will outpace people moving from satellite to cable.

    DirecTV is lucky that there are horrendous and overpriced cable companies like Cox, as well as rural areas that don't have cable or good broadband, as if those problems, along with arbitrary and capricious data caps were suddenly remedied, the bottom would drop out from another big chunk of DirecTV's market in favor of vMVPDs and cord cutting, with only part of it being recaptured by AT&T in their own ILEC territory to bundle with fiber.

    However, in the end, it really doesn't matter how many customers DirecTV has. Wall Street loves subscriber numbers, and that's one reason that MSOs give cable TV away at near their own cost with broadband, but that's not how a company makes money. AT&T is finally getting smarter with DirecTV and focusing only on profitable customers, and letting the rest go. If DirecTV ends up just being bundled with some AT&T lines, in a few rural areas, used for portable/mobile applications like RVs and boats, and used for commercial/hospitality, but is still quite profitable, then great for DirecTV, even if they have <5M subscribers.
     
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  16. Jul 26, 2019 #96 of 373
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Fair enough. I personally doubt I'll ever subscribe other than maybe one month a year here or there. I do like a few of those Pixar movies but I don't have kids and I'm not into Star Wars or Marvel stuff.
     
  17. Jul 26, 2019 #97 of 373
    NashGuy

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    I suspect this is true only if you're on a low-end channel tier and you don't subscribe to any full-price a la carte premiums. Even when discount bundled with internet, I think DirecTV is making money on their Xtra package and Comcast is making money on their Preferred package. Remember, both companies own a decent chunk of the channels they carry.
     
  18. Jul 26, 2019 #98 of 373
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Maybe that's part of it but it's not the whole reason. DTV's sub numbers have dropped every quarter since 1Q 2017. Do you think they've been cracking down on discounts that long?

    DirecTV: no of video subscribers in the U.S. 2019 | Statista
     
  19. Jul 26, 2019 #99 of 373
    trip1eX

    trip1eX Well-Known Member

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    Oh ok. I was curious because yesterday I bought some $100 Netflix gift cards at Best Buy because they gave away a $15 BB card with each one. I thought that was good. :)
     
  20. NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    I definitely think a particular factor that's hurt DTV is that AT&T has done nothing to improve the service's streaming platform. Seriously, the app line-up on DTV Genie receivers is:

    [drumroll, please]

    ESPN, The Weather Channel, Music Choice and, uh, that's about it.

    No Netflix. No YouTube. No Prime Video. No Hulu. No HBO Go. No Showtime Anytime. No Starz. Folks like to rag on TiVo's app game but, seriously, DTV's HAS NO app game.
     

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