YouTube TV has announced that it is adding Discovery’s lineup of networks to its channel package. As of today, the Discovery Channel, HGTV, Food Network, TLC, Investigation Discovery, Animal Planet, Travel Channel, and MotorTrend are all available to YouTube TV subscribers. Unfortunately, adding those popular channels will result in YouTube raising the price of its internet TV service yet again. Also effective immediately, YouTube TV will cost $50 per month (or $55 if you’re subscribing directly through an Apple device). Existing customers will start paying the new price as of May 13th.
YouTube isn't forking its channel plans or offering anything besides the main option, so if you’re not a frequent watcher of Discovery’s stuff, you’ve still got to pay the new, higher monthly rate. But the company claims that these networks have been a frequent request from customers, so it must think the payoff of adding Discovery will outweigh any lost subscribers who bail over the latest price hike. Below is YouTube TV’s new channel lineup (your regional sports channels will obviously differ depending on where you are):
There’s a reason YouTube TV never had these channels until today; not unlike traditional cable providers, channel owners want these internet TV services to pay up to carry their live programming. Often, companies decide it’s not worth it. Several internet TV services including YouTube TV, Hulu with Live TV, and PlayStation Vue lack Viacom’s roster of networks, for example. (DirecTV Now recently removed Viacom networks from its cheapest, base-level channel package, only to add them back after AT&T and Viacom reached a new deal.) And just like cable, that leads providers to pass those higher prices to the customer.
YouTube TV is still my favorite streaming TV service because of its simple interface, reliability, unlimited DVR, and ability to fast forward through commercials on those DVR recordings. That’s not a guaranteed thing you get with its competitors. At $50, it’s still recommended — but hopefully we’re done seeing that price continue to climb for awhile.