Cord cutting on the cheap!

lparsons21

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While true, I don't think it's a long term issue. It's likely a legacy rights issue that can get resolved as local streaming rights are offered/become available.

Live streaming also offers niche sports a chance for broader exposure. It's kind of telling that ESPN broadcast the American Cornhole League. You can also watch curling and rugby on NBCSN.

Even those who don't like sports watch things like competitive cooking on Food Network, or the Masked Singer.
Yeah, if the niche exists, someone will fill it at some point in time. The problem is price. If you have a sports only streaming service, then the true cost of those channels is exposed and it doesn’t get diluted by everyone paying for them as is the case with cable/sat and streamers that have them.

For Boxing and I think a few other sports, DAZN is making some inroads.


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harshness

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While true, I don't think it's a long term issue. It's likely a legacy rights issue that can get resolved as local streaming rights are offered/become available.
I disagree. While series programming costs can be supported by syndication, you can't reasonably syndicate sports programming as it loses most of its value within a few days.
 

lparsons21

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I disagree. While series programming costs can be supported by syndication, you can't reasonably syndicate sports programming as it loses most of its value within a few days.
Yeah, that’s an issue with sports as it is usually one and done for a game.

One of the issues that I believe will come up is what will happen with streaming when CBS, Hulu w/Fox & ABC, and Peacock NBC Universal stuff is all online? Currently Hulu has most of NBC but not all. Some articles indicate that will hold for 5 years because of a contract between Hulu & NBC, but other articles claim that isn’t quite what it appears to be. Hulu has all of Fox and ABC and that will probably hold going forward. And CBS is already at the point they want to be and it seems it is fairly successful with the combo of TV stuff and originals. And what will be the future of Netflix & Amazon?

And then, what will happen to the cable/sat streamers? Will the various ‘channels’ keep licensing to them, or will those shows go away over time? IMO, the cable/sat replacement services are short term solutions that will gradually go away as people get used to other ways using multiple apps with possibly an app integration solution coming along. YTTV is kind of a big question too. Google is known for dropping services and tech if it doesn’t do as well as they want it to, so that is a fair question.

Or as prices for streaming rise as they are nearly sure to do, will people start fondly remember just how easy it is to use a cable/sat box to manage their TV entertainment and revive that market? And let’s face it, the simplest way to get the most TV is still the cable/sat box. It is what people are used to, it works pretty well and it is all there in one simple grid guide. The downside is price caused by fat channel bundles. And going forward are the younger folks of today going to shift how they watch shows to that more simple solution as they age and the recliner in front of the big screen hold some allure?


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harshness

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And what will be the future of Netflix & Amazon?
Amazon is more or less harmless in this as they're presumably going to be reselling (authenticating for a commission) the OTT services from the networks. Netflix is pretty certain to hurt as they don't have such arrangements.
YTTV is kind of a big question too. Google is known for dropping services and tech if it doesn’t do as well as they want it to, so that is a fair question.
YTTV could be around until the monolithic model completely collapses. What it comes down to is whether Google's pride is worth the money they're reportedly losing on YTTV. As long as the competition (Sling, Philo, maybe Fubo) doesn't grab a majority of the market, I can see them keeping this up for quite a while but eventually the shareholders are going to want to know why they're dribbling profits down the drain.
 

lparsons21

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Amazon is more or less harmless in this as they're presumably going to be reselling (authenticating for a commission) the OTT services from the networks. Netflix is pretty certain to hurt as they don't have such arrangements.
Yeah, Amazon doesn’t do a whole lot of catalog series from the networks back seasons though they do some. And bundling their Prime offering they way they do many of us figure the video is just a freebie part of the deal.

Netflix is certainly a different animal. Their TV shows are either from the networks catalog of back seasons, or last years season when the current season starts back up, and that probably won’t hold going forward. So it is getting a lot of originals, some of which are actually originals and some of which are foreign offerings not seen on other services. That’s going to be tough for them to do if they are forced to reduce their subscription fees or get more of the things that aren’t elsewhere and create more originals. Going to be real interesting how the all works for them.



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NashGuy

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Or as prices for streaming rise as they are nearly sure to do, will people start fondly remember just how easy it is to use a cable/sat box to manage their TV entertainment and revive that market? And let’s face it, the simplest way to get the most TV is still the cable/sat box. It is what people are used to, it works pretty well and it is all there in one simple grid guide. The downside is price caused by fat channel bundles. And going forward are the younger folks of today going to shift how they watch shows to that more simple solution as they age and the recliner in front of the big screen hold some allure?
This doesn't seem to be a likely scenario, IMO. A growing number of young folks exist who've never been exposed to the ol' grid guide and fat channel bundle. Can't see why they would want to go "back" to something they never knew. (The idea of having to set up and manage recordings from linear channels seems ridiculous if clicking on-demand tiles is all you've ever known.)

Every year that goes by, there's a bigger share of "cord-nevers" plus a bigger share of current or former cable TV subscribers who are comfortable getting much or all of their TV via apps.

Beyond that shift in consumer behavior/habit, the other thing that will increasingly push us toward streaming and away from channel-based TV is the availability of content. In the end, it's really about the content. As more and more of the content that consumers value becomes available or even exclusive to streaming, then that's where consumers will follow it to. Lots of Gen X and older folks might prefer to watch The Crown and Stranger Things on a linear cable channel and record it to their DVR but they can't. If they want to watch it, they must go into the Netflix app. So they do.

The big question, of course, is when sports becomes available via streaming, apart from the cable bundle. At some point, I expect ESPN will make all of the live sports from across their various cable channels available for a certain price in the ESPN app as a standalone service (similar to what HBO did when they launched HBO Now). In other cases, I expect we'll see streaming services like Prime Video or Apple TV+ buy the exclusive rights to certain sports and that will be the only way to view them. They won't even air on a linear channel. But all that will take time and it will be a mess for consumers over the course of the 2020s...
 

lparsons21

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This doesn't seem to be a likely scenario, IMO. A growing number of young folks exist who've never been exposed to the ol' grid guide and fat channel bundle. Can't see why they would want to go "back" to something they never knew. (The idea of having to set up and manage recordings from linear channels seems ridiculous if clicking on-demand tiles is all you've ever known.)
Sure they’ve been exposed to cable/sat, it is what their parents and/or grandparents have. Whether or not they would want that at some time down the road is an open question. Because regardless of the warts, getting TV via a cable/sat box is the simplest way to do it.

Let’s face, at this point in time doing all streaming just isn’t graceful. In general it takes using more than one service to obtain what you want and that means more than one app with more than one UI. Not totally daunting, but certainly not as simple as the grid guide and cable/sat. The question a person has to answer for themselves is what is it worth to have the more simplistic way over the more complicated one.

For me, the streaming solution is more about controlling what I can watch during the day and less about cost, though cost is part of the equation. On cable/sat it is reruns of the same shows on a few channels and often those rerun episodes are episodes they just showed the day before or last week. With streaming I can pick and choose what I want and chances are that it will still be reruns, but it will be reruns of shows that are not on cable/sat at all and haven’t been for awhile.



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lparsons21

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The big question, of course, is when sports becomes available via streaming, apart from the cable bundle. At some point, I expect ESPN will make all of the live sports from across their various cable channels available for a certain price in the ESPN app as a standalone service (similar to what HBO did when they launched HBO Now). In other cases, I expect we'll see streaming services like Prime Video or Apple TV+ buy the exclusive rights to certain sports and that will be the only way to view them. They won't even air on a linear channel. But all that will take time and it will be a mess for consumers over the course of the 2020s...
Yep, sports is the elephant in the room. How does a streaming service have sports at a price people will pay. They do now because the true cost is subsidized by everyone paying and the bundling of channels. When the true cost of doing sports is fully paid for by the sports fans I have to wonder how many will be willing to pay the pony!


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lparsons21

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Called Mediacom today to find out just where in the contract I’m at and what happens at the end of this term. Expires in June of this year and if I do nothing, goes up $20. That would make the bill $179 for tv and internet, internet only would be $99.

The timing is great IMO. I can do nothing now, which will cost me some money and the expiration date of the contract falls in time to see what Peacock and HBO Max actually brings to the table. The devil is in the details for those two.

Assuming my current streaming subs with the addition of what I think Peacock and HBO Max will add, the difference between staying with cable I have now and cutting the cord is $54/month or $648/year. Of course that savings would be reduced over the year as some of the streamers I use will raise prices a bit.

Note that in the streaming configuration I’m considering there is no cable/sat replacement service. And the only assured sports would be OTA with Fox or ABC, which is fine with me.

For info, the configuration would be:
Netflix
Hulu no ads
CBS All Access no ads
AppleTV+
Disney+
Peacock
HBO Max

And whatever OTA I can get which is Fox and ABC and their associated subchannels.


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theBruce

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Sure they’ve been exposed to cable/sat, it is what their parents and/or grandparents have. Whether or not they would want that at some time down the road is an open question. Because regardless of the warts, getting TV via a cable/sat box is the simplest way to do it.
Exposed yes, did not care no.

My kids while growing up were just happy in their rooms watching Netflix and You Tube, now that they are Adults living in their own homes all they have are Streaming Services and care nothing about live TV.

I have pointed this out before, as a population in the United States, we grow by 1.5 million every year ( 4 million born, 2.5 million die), and it has been that way for about 30 years, now that means that Traditional TV Providers are not just losing customers ( 7 million this year) but they are not picking up new customers because the young people just don't care about regular TV.
 
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Zookster

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When I was in graduate school and for a few years after (mid to late '90s), I was paying $30-$35 for the full analog cable channel package (no internet, no cell, and maybe $10-$12 for a landline). Housing prices were much lower. Never thought about health care costs. Student loans were manageable. I can't even imagine the kinds of bills young people today are faced with coming out of college. Beyond taking advantage of a first-year promo deal that's too good to pass up, I can't imagine many would be looking to pay $150-$200 for a full cable w/ DVR and a robust internet bundle right out of school. And once they get used to doing without and learn to use OTT options, I don't see how or why they'd check out a traditional pay TV service years down the road once (if) they become more settled financially.
 

Andrew Sullivan

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When you say that young adults care nothing about live TV you are not considering live sports. Sports in general rule the TV landscape. There would actually be very little demand for cable type service if it weren't for sports. Especially when looking at the world wide market. Live sports and streaming isn't the elephant in the room, it's the whate in the bathtub.
 

Bilbo1

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Because regardless of the warts, getting TV via a cable/sat box is the simplest way to do it.
For you it may be. I think Douglas Adam's says it best...

I've come up with a set of rules that describe our reactions to technologies:
1. Anything that is in the world when you’re born is normal and ordinary and is just a natural part of the way the world works.
2. Anything that's invented between when you’re fifteen and thirty-five is new and exciting and revolutionary and you can probably get a career in it.
3. Anything invented after you're thirty-five is against the natural order of things.
Douglas Adams, The Salmon of Doubt (Dirk Gently, #3)




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Bilbo1

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I disagree. While series programming costs can be supported by syndication, you can't reasonably syndicate sports programming as it loses most of its value within a few days.
If I understand your argument, no network should buy the rights to a sporting event because no one will watch it in the future. You are saying that Fox shouldn't have bought the rights to the Superbowl because there is little value in syndicated Superbowls.


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theBruce

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When you say that young adults care nothing about live TV you are not considering live sports. Sports in general rule the TV landscape. There would actually be very little demand for cable type service if it weren't for sports. Especially when looking at the world wide market. Live sports and streaming isn't the elephant in the room, it's the whate in the bathtub.
Actually I am, look at the ratings for the last Super Bowl, 99 million out of a population of 329 million, that is less then a third of the United States for the biggest Sporting Event of the year, usually sports get a fraction of that number.
 
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Bilbo1

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Yeah, if the niche exists, someone will fill it at some point in time. The problem is price. If you have a sports only streaming service, then the true cost of those channels is exposed and it doesn’t get diluted by everyone paying for them as is the case with cable/sat and streamers that have them.
I'm not sure that there is a large production cost for streaming a game... A couple of cameras and announcers - could all be students at a small college, and voila, streamed sporting event. And, with some sort of CDN, which can be quite cheap, there is almost no distribution costs.

Example: Twitch! Kids live stream their video gaming to an audience of could be a lot.


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lparsons21

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I'm not sure that there is a large production cost for streaming a game... A couple of cameras and announcers - could all be students at a small college, and voila, streamed sporting event. And, with some sort of CDN, which can be quite cheap, there is almost no distribution costs.

Example: Twitch! Kids live stream their video gaming to an audience of could be a lot.


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Might not be a huge production cost to do it, but the licensing from the league/team owners and such is not small potatoes. Gotta pay those team members those fat wages you know. For college sports, I don’t know if there’s any colleges that allow for broadcasting their games without payment in some form or other. All in all it is a very expensive process.


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NashGuy

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Sure they’ve been exposed to cable/sat, it is what their parents and/or grandparents have. Whether or not they would want that at some time down the road is an open question. Because regardless of the warts, getting TV via a cable/sat box is the simplest way to do it.
Really? The kids in my family are in their teens/20s and they have never had cable TV. And the younger you go, the higher percentage of kids that's true of.

Let’s face, at this point in time doing all streaming just isn’t graceful. In general it takes using more than one service to obtain what you want and that means more than one app with more than one UI. Not totally daunting, but certainly not as simple as the grid guide and cable/sat. The question a person has to answer for themselves is what is it worth to have the more simplistic way over the more complicated one.
I agree to an extent but you're raising a straw man argument because a lot of content that folks want to watch won't ever be on a linear TV channel. Netflix isn't going to launch The Netflix Channel. YouTube isn't going to launch The YouTube Channel that shows an endless stream of clips. So it's not just a question of the way the content is packaged and presented, it a question of the content itself.
 

lparsons21

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Really? The kids in my family are in their teens/20s and they have never had cable TV. And the younger you go, the higher percentage of kids that's true of.



I agree to an extent but you're raising a straw man argument because a lot of content that folks want to watch won't ever be on a linear TV channel. Netflix isn't going to launch The Netflix Channel. YouTube isn't going to launch The YouTube Channel that shows an endless stream of clips. So it's not just a question of the way the content is packaged and presented, it a question of the content itself.
Didn’t say the kids had cableTV, said they had been exposed to it. And just because they don’t want it now doesn’t mean that might change in the future.

Gotta wonder about content going forward. The various channels have used the cheap reruns to give themselves something to show for 24 hours a day and pay for the few originals they now do. Wonder how it will all come out with the shift from channels to the content.


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harshness

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As children age and their tastes change, I expect that what they want to watch and how they acquire it will change as well.
 

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