AT&T’s New DirecTV Streaming Service Threatens Cable TV & Sling TV

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AT&T announced Tuesday that it plans to offer an Internet-based DirecTV streaming service later in 2016, allowing users to stream DirecTV video channels.

That means that those looking to cut the cord on Cable TV will have a much easier way to do it in just a few months. You’ll be able to stream TV channels through their three streaming services through one of three tiers: DirecTV Now, DirecTV Mobile and DirecTV Preview.

Obviously, AT&T was looking ahead last year when they purchased DirecTV, as this is certainly a gamechanger in the MCO/Telco industry.

In my discussion about the future of the Cable TV industry, something like this was inevitable – and I expect the other Cable TV providers to start leaning toward Internet coverage, with higher ISP charges.

Who’s Threatened the Most By AT&T’s & DirecTV Streaming Service?

Obviously, everything depends on the pricing structure and the channels available in each of these tiers, but there are definitely a few companies that should be concerned about this news.

Cable TV Providers: Considering the fact that AT&T U-verse and Verizon FiOS have been cutting into Cable TV’s numbers for years now, piling on with the chunk that industry lost to satellite TV providers like DirecTV, this is just another kick in the shins.

Now, you won’t need to have AT&T U-verse available in your area and you won’t have to be concerned about trees in your backyard blocking out a satellite signal. As long as you have an Internet connection, possibly the last link you’ll have with your Cable TV provider, you’ll be able to watch the TV channels provided on AT&T’s new DirecTV Now streaming service.

Sling TV App: This app allows cordcutters the opportunity to cut the cord on Cable TV, yet still be able to watch live channels, like ESPN, TNT, TBS, Food Network, Cartoon Network, Disney Channel and many others.

But if AT&T’s new DirecTV streaming service has as many channels and a similar price range, they have the marketing power to kill Sling TV altogether.

Possibly the most important option would be if this new DirecTV streaming service has local networks as channel options.

At any rate, this is huge news from AT&T – something many were expecting for a few months after acquiring the satellite giant. There are still plenty of questions that need to be answered, though, before AT&T’s new DirecTV streaming service becomes the answer for Cable TV-haters everywhere!

Photo Credit: Aaron Anderer

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