Do Future TV Consumers Want 'Nuance' In Pay TV -- Or To Be Hit Over The Head?

Residing in the world of TV cord-cutting amid ever-expanding OTT platforms, the “nuanced” approach may be right for consumers, who may enjoy the hands-on building of their own virtual pay TV portal.

"We think there's a more 'nuanced' [emphasis added] role for us to play in helping you get access to the great media brands out there that you love and to be able to put together your own media subscription in smaller pieces: $5, $6, $7 or $8 at a time," said Mike Sievert, chief operating officer of T-Mobile.

Communications company T-Mobile is readying its own pay TV service. Last year, T-Mobile acquired Layer3 TV, a mid-size Denver-based pay TV provider that has launched pay TV services in a handful of U.S. markets.

This might be new wrinkle for some.

T-Mobile may be hinting that consumers do not like the idea of the all-you-can-eat traditional TV services that we have seen on cable, satellite, and telco, where consumers can pay $80 to $120 a month for a package of around 200 to 300 channels.



It might not even be one of those “skinny” virtual pay TV services.

In T-Mobile's model, we could call it "build your own."

Consumers may want to start at even a lower price point than the $20- or $30-a-month plans they might find on a Sling TV, DirecTV Now, Hulu or PlayStation Vue. To be fair, those services also have add-on TV network/app features. Perhaps T-Mobile will go one step further.

Amazon Channels may already be ahead in this area -- trying to operate in a similar world, allowing consumers to pick TV networks/programming on a virtual “a la carte” basis.

At the same time -- on the other end of things -- there are some calls for new re-aggregation of the all-encompassing cable TV model -- at least in the virtual space. Does that mean some consumers will be back to where they started from, looking for the ease of operation when it comes to a big package of TV networks?

One thing is for sure -- modern TV consumers want choice, low price and ease of operation. There's nothing nuanced about that.

2 comments about "Do Future TV Consumers Want 'Nuance' In Pay TV -- Or To Be Hit Over The Head?".
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  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, February 11, 2019 at 10:51 a.m.

    One thing that seems to go unnoticed is that many of those clamoring for greater freedom of choice in their TV viewing options are relatively light---or more selective---TV consumers. This is in sharp contrast to TV's "base"---- that 20% of the population that watches about 10 hours of TV per day, not 5 which is the overall average. As "TV Dimensions 2019" subscribers know, these heavy viewers account for 50-55% of the average minute audience of a typical TV show---broadcast or cable---and they seem perfectly happy having lots of "pay TV" channels to munch on ---hour after hour, day after day. So let's not assume that everyone feels the same way about greater selectivity. TV's "couch potatoes" may want as many channels as possible---providing the cost doesn't skyrocket----to occupy their time.

  2. William Graff from beIN Media Group, February 12, 2019 at 4:01 p.m.

    One of the key deciding factors is the "ease of oeration" which you note at the end. Having to navigate out of one app and then navigate into another is a much clunkier experience than simply switching channels on a cable or satellite system. Until the UI's offer similar convenience the legacy systems will have a leg up, especially for older subscribers.

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