YouTube Announces Launch of Television Service
But the app delivers more questions than answers
Move on over YouTube Red!
YouTube announced the launch of its own television streaming service at an event in Los Angeles yesterday, in the latest example in a surge of over-the-top services attempting to persuade consumers away from traditional cable television.
YouTube TV, as the app is called, will offer a mix of live-streams and cable television programming (and access to YouTube Red content). Enticing as it may sound, the fine print presents more questions than answers to traditional cable users.
For $35 a month, the streaming service will offer all four major networks — ABC, CBS, FOX, and NBC — and roughly 35 cable channels. The price covers six personalized accounts, however, only three concurrent streams are allowed at a time.
That is of course unless you live outside of the major markets in the United States. The service is scheduled to launch first in major markets, meaning smaller cities and urban areas may have to wait. As for the international service, that has yet to be determined.
Which begs the question, why enter the flooded streaming television market with what sounds like an unfinished product?
YouTube TV, similar to other streaming services, will also have content gaps. The app will not include channels from Viacom, including big names like Comedy Central and MTV.
The programming will also not include Turner Broadcasting, meaning consumers won't be able to get CNN, TBS, and TNT. AMC Networks, Discovery Communications, Time Warner and A+E Networks. Furthermore, the app will offer Showtime, at a cost, but not HBO.
YouTube did not announce a specific date for the launch of the app, however, it expects to roll out the streaming service in the next few months.
With competition like DirecTV Now, Vue, and Sling, as well as Hulu and Netflix, YouTube needs to consider its approach to entering the streaming market. Because in order to entice users to pay for a platform that has been predominantly free, like YouTube, the streaming app and its content will have be worth it.