There still isn’t a ton of information about Verizon’s upcoming streaming TV service, but a new report from TechCrunch last week did shed some light on what Verizon’s overall strategy with the service might look like.
According to TechCrunch’s source, Verizon’s service would look to bundle content together in themed “channels,” each its own standalone app and with a focus on a specific topic like news, sports, or entertainment. All this would still be separate from the company’s existing Go90 mobile video service as well.
The channels would combine content already available from Verizon-owned Oath properties (like TechCrunch, The Huffington Post, Engadget, and others), along with premium third-party content. It’s still unclear whether this would be a free, ad-supported service, or if it would require a subscription.
Each channel is also said to have some sort of “marquee” content to help it stand out (using Verizon’s exclusive NFL content to attract viewers to a sports channel / app, for instance).
Assuming Verizon goes that route, it would certainly be a different approach from competitors like AT&T’s DirecTV Now, Google’s YouTube TV, Sony’s PlayStation Vue, and Hulu’s live TV service, which offer more traditional channel bundles more akin to cable. Dish’s Sling TV offers themed add-on packs of additional channels, but they’re not separate apps. In Verizon’s case, a lot will depend on how much content each separate “channel” app has and how much it costs. That said, given Verizon no longer has to worry about little things like violating net neutrality laws with the new service, it’s almost guaranteed that whatever Verizon does decide to do for its streaming TV service, it’ll likely be giving itself a healthy competitive advantage with policies like not counting its own streaming toward data caps (at least, if past history is anything to go by).
Verizon was first rumored to be launching a TV service back in March of last year, which was confirmed a few months later by CEO Lowell McAdam. However, plans to launch last summer were delayed. The service is now set to launch sometime this year.