Published on June 19th, 2018 | by Brad Gibson0
AT&T’s sports-free TV streaming service bound for Apple TV? We don’t know
AT&T’s CEO has confirmed the company will launch a $15-a-month sports-free television streaming service of basic channels this week, but what is not known is if the service will be immediately or ever available as a streaming service to televisions through Apple TV.
Just days after closing its $85.4 billion purchase of Time Warner, CEO Randall Stephenson said in an interview with CNBC’s Squawk Box, that it would be following through on its promise to launch a “very, very skinny bundle” of television channels in the next few days.
Called AT&T Watch, it would ditch sports to keep the price low and be available for free to the company’s unlimited wireless subscribers and $15 per month for anyone else.
Saying “it will be entertainment centered, Stephenson confirmed it will include Time Warner’s Turner collection of channels – like TBS, TNT, CNN and Cartoon Network – but gave no other details on exactly what channels would be included.
What is also not known is if the company plans on making Watch available as a package on streaming devices like Apple TV at launch or in the future. An AT&T media spokesperson has not replied to multiple requests for comment to BESTAppleTV.com.
At present, the only streaming service available from AT&T is its DirecTV Now service. DirecTV Now launched in November of 2016 using the Apple TV app with an entry-level package price of $35 per month for over 60 channels.
The AT&T Watch package would be similar to the competitive service Philo, which currently offers a $16-a-month bundle of 37 cable channels and has been available since last November. The service is currently not available on Apple TV, but is expected to launch late this summer on the platform. Philo does not offer sports programming such as ESPN and NBCSN, which have high subscriptions rates that are passed on to customers.
AT&T announced Watch last April saying it would become reality if and when the AT&T-Time Warner merger went through.
In May, AT&T CFO John Stephens described Watch as “very low end, very thin collection of products” with “some of the Turner video channels and bundle them with a small number of other channels and put a very small product for a customer base who is looking for that value and have a price point in the $15 range.”