Do millennials want pay-TV or don't they? This is one of the most hotly-debated topics in the video industry today. The "don't" camp is well-represented by Charlie Ergen, head of DISH Network, who recently said, "We’re losing a whole generation of individuals who aren’t going to buy into that model because they only want one particular show or they want to watch the show wherever they can or they want to watch it on their schedule and so that generation is not signing up to satellite or cable or phone video today."
Last week, Ergen and DISH took an important step toward re-imagining pay-TV to make it more relevant to millennials by securing OTT distribution rights to key Disney/ESPN channels. Bloomberg reported that a new OTT service from DISH could sell for $20-30/month, far less than today's typical pay-TV bundle. BTIG's Rich Greenfield subsequently fleshed out what a new lower-priced personal subscription service or "PSS" could look like: a limited access one-stream-at-a-time model geared to single-adults or light TV viewers.
At last week's Cable Show, BTIG's media analyst Rich Greenfield and I sat down for a wide-ranging discussion of what's happening in the online video, broadband and pay-TV industries. If you're not familiar with Rich's work, his blog posts (note: registration required) are required reading for anyone in the business. I'm a big fan and always learn something new from them.
In our discussion we talk about a number of topics that Rich has written extensively about: why broadband ISPs should price on speed, not usage, why TV networks should get over it with Dish Network's new Auto Hop feature, why Aereo is so disruptive and yes, legal and why we'll see a "virtual" multichannel distributor emerge soon. Rich also shares thoughts on TV Everywhere's challenges, Disney/ESPN's big out-of-home opportunities, the role of escalating sports rights fees, Apple's plans for a TV, and what's ahead in the video industry. Watch the video (26 minutes, 47 seconds).
Categories: Broadband ISPs