AT&T TV

AT&T TV
Formerly
DirecTV Now (2016–2019)
Subsidiary
IndustryPay television
FoundedNovember 30, 2016; 2 years ago (2016-11-30)
FounderAT&T Corporation Edit this on Wikidata
HeadquartersEl Segundo,
California
,
United States
Area served
United States
ServicesOTT Internet Television
ParentAT&T Communications
Websitewww.att.com/tv/

AT&T TV is a family of streaming pay television services offered in the United States by AT&T.

The brand encompasses three separate services sharing similar infrastructure and software: AT&T TV Now (formerly DirecTV Now) is a national, direct-to-consumer service which launched on November 30, 2016, and is designed to compete with other "over-the-top" television services.[1][2]

In June 2018, AT&T launched WatchTV, a skinny bundle service aimed at cord cutters, featuring no local or sports channels.[3]

In August 2019, concurrent with a rebranding of the national service, AT&T began to offer a version of the service known as AT&T TV, which is sold on-contract in a similar manner to traditional multichannel television services, and utilizes Android TV-based set-top boxes rented to subscribers. It is only presently available in parts of California, Florida, Missouri and Texas, replacing AT&T U-verse TV in markets where that service was previously offered. It is sold as part of bundles with AT&T internet services.

History[edit]

On July 13, 2017, it was reported that AT&T was preparing to introduce a cloud-based DVR streaming service as part of its effort to create a unified platform across the DirecTV satellite television service and DirecTV Now services, with U-verse to be added soon.[4][5][6]

In March 2019, DirecTV Now instituted a new package structure for new subscribers with fewer channels included (although with HBO now included in the base package), and increased pricing for all subscribers.[7] By the second quarter of 2019, DirecTV Now lost 168,000 subscribers (decreasing to 1.3 million), with AT&T citing "higher prices and less promotional activity" as reasoning.[8]

As of the second quarter of 2019, DirecTV Now had 1.3 million subscribers.

On July 30, 2019, AT&T announced an upcoming streaming television service known as AT&T TV, which would feature an Android TV-based set-top box with a Google Assistant-based voice remote, use the same apps used by DirecTV Now, and offer cloud DVR with 500 hours of storage. Unlike DirecTV Now, this service is sold on a contract basis (and in bundles with AT&T Internet), and requires the rental or purchase of proprietary set-top boxes. The service allows user self-installation, but activation fees are still charged. AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson referred to AT&T TV as a "workhorse" service succeeding DirecTV and AT&T U-verse in its pay television business.[9] The service was initially launched in selected markets in California, Florida, Kansas, Missouri, and Texas, with additional markets to follow. Concurrently it was announced that DirecTV Now would re-brand as AT&T TV Now.[10][11][12][13]

In September 2019, a class action lawsuit was filed against AT&T, alleging that it had falsely inflated its reported number of AT&T TV Now subscribers by engaging in "unrelenting pressure and strong-arm tactics" and giving unwanted subscriptions to the service to customers without their consent, as well as making false claims surrounding risks related to the service in its SEC filings related to the purchase of Time Warner. [14][15]

Programming[edit]

Now version[edit]

AT&T TV Now logo

The service's current base package "Plus" includes channels from co-owned division WarnerMedia, HBO, as well as the four major television networks, Disney (including subsidiaries FX Networks and National Geographic), Fox Corporation, NBCUniversal Cable, Viacom,[16] as well as other networks such as Hallmark Channel. The "Max" package adds Cinemax, Paramount Network, TV Land, CMT and various additional sports channels. Previous packages also included channels from AMC Networks, Discovery, and A&E Networks. They are not included in the current base package offerings, but are still accessible to existing subscribers.[17][18]

WatchTV version[edit]

AT&T's WatchTV service currently offers linear channels owned by its fellow division WarnerMedia, as well as A&E Networks, AMC Networks, Discovery and Viacom.

Local version[edit]

AT&T TV NOW is packaged in two tiers, including "Plus" and "Max” along with an "Español" add-on tier oriented primarily towards Spanish-language services.[19][20]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Gryta, Thomas (26 November 2016). "As AT&T's DirecTV Now Streaming Service Is Unveiled, Watch the Details". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 28 November 2016.
  2. ^ "AT&T Sets DirecTV Now Launch Event for Nov. 28". Variety. Variety. Retrieved 28 November 2016.
  3. ^ AT&T’s low-cost TV streaming service WatchTV goes live - TechCrunch, 29 June 2018
  4. ^ Lawler, Richard (July 13, 2017). "AT&T's 'next-gen' TV platform rollout will start on DirecTV Now". Engadget. Retrieved July 13, 2017.
  5. ^ Lieberman, David (July 13, 2017). "AT&T To Offer Cloud-Based DVR To Streaming Services". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved July 13, 2017.
  6. ^ Frankel, Daniel (July 13, 2017). "DirecTV Now to finally get cloud DVR as part of AT&T video platform rollout". Fierce Cable. Retrieved July 13, 2017.
  7. ^ Brodkin, Jon (2019-03-12). "AT&T raises DirecTV Now price—again—after promising lower post-merger bills". Ars Technica. Retrieved 2019-07-31.
  8. ^ Brodkin, Jon (2019-07-25). "AT&T loses nearly 1 million TV customers after raising DirecTV prices". Ars Technica. Retrieved 2019-07-31.
  9. ^ "AT&T's New Online TV Service Looks a Lot Like Current Offerings". Bloomberg.com. Retrieved 2019-08-30.
  10. ^ Newman, Jared (2019-08-19). "AT&T TV is here, but cord cutters should read the fine print before signing up". Fast Company. Retrieved 2019-08-30.
  11. ^ Blumenthal, Eli. "What is AT&T TV? Here's what we know now". CNET. Retrieved 2019-07-31.
  12. ^ Brodkin, Jon (2019-07-30). "AT&T kills DirecTV Now brand name as TV subscribers leave in droves". Ars Technica. Retrieved 2019-07-31.
  13. ^ "AT&T changes DirecTV Now to AT&T TV Now". FierceVideo. Retrieved 2019-07-31.
  14. ^ "AT&T sued for allegedly inflating DirecTV Now numbers with fake accounts". FierceVideo. Retrieved 2019-09-19.
  15. ^ "AT&T faked DirecTV Now numbers, lawsuit alleges". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2019-09-19.
  16. ^ Bouma, Luke (2019-04-05). "DIRECTV NOW Plus & Max Are Adding Viacom Channels Today". Cord Cutters News. Retrieved 2019-10-04.
  17. ^ Bouma, Luke (2019-03-10). "Here Is Every Channel DIRECTV NOW Plus & DIRECTV NOW MAX Offer". Cord Cutters News. Retrieved 2019-07-31.
  18. ^ Brodkin, Jon (2019-03-12). "AT&T raises DirecTV Now price—again—after promising lower post-merger bills". Ars Technica. Retrieved 2019-07-31.
  19. ^ Spangler, Todd (2019-08-21). "AT&T TV: An Unskinny Streaming Bundle That Looks a Lot Like Traditional Pay TV". Variety. Retrieved 2019-08-30.
  20. ^ "'AT&T TV' Streams Into 10 Test Markets". Light Reading. Retrieved 2019-09-18.

External links[edit]