DirecTV Launches Filipino-Targeted GMA Life
The network, GMA Life TV, focuses on life and style topics. It's the latest Filipino channel--targeted to Tagalog-speaking Americans--among DirecTV's FilipinoDirect package, which is part of its WorldDirect tier.
GMA Life is run by the GMA Network, a TV and radio broadcaster in the Philippines, that also offers GMA Pinoy across the globe, including on DirecTV. That channel offers telenovelas and news programs, among other content.
The female-targeted GMA Life offers health, beauty and personal empowerment-type shows during the day and dramas in the evening. One offering is "Chef to Go," about a chef who can solve a "kitchen emergency."
Another, "The Sweet Life," is a daily magazine show that teaches viewers how to live in style.
John de Armas, vice president of WorldDirect, said the network "allows us to deeply engage the Filipina audience in the U.S. ... Our goal is to help preserve cultural roots and native language by offering culturally relevant content and providing captivating lifestyle programming."
The WorldDirect tier has some 135 channels in languages ranging from Russian to Tamil to Mandarin.
DirecTV has 17.3 million subscribers. There is one theory--hardly proven--among satellite, cable and now telco TV providers that the number of Americans who wish to subscribe to their services may have topped out, so ways to grow their businesses include peeling customers away from each other, perhaps by offering GMA Life-like targeted networks, and then charging extra for them.
On the flip side, the coming digital transition could provide a boost to expanding a customer base, since analog homes eventually could subscribe to one of the services.