YouTube on the Tube: Google announces YouTube TV streaming service
In an era where more and more homes are cutting the cable and turning to online sources for TV and video media, we’re seeing more and more content providers offer traditional TV channels through internet streaming. Yesterday, YouTube announced that they will be joining the fray with YouTube TV, an online streaming service that bundles in several major TV channels and broadcasters.
For $35 a month, subscribers to YouTube TV will get access to live content from the four major U.S. broadcasters: ABC, NBC, Fox, and NBC. The bundle also includes about 42 channels, including ESPN and Disney. The service includes YouTube Red content and a “cloud DVR” that allows users to store an unlimited amount of shows for later viewing. YouTube TV also features a smart AI-driven search system that can tailor suggestions to 6 accounts each and can be synced with Chromecast and Google Home devices.
YouTube TV has some quirks, though. Foremost, paid broadcast channels (like those owned by Viacom) are not available. That rules out channels such as Comedy Central, CNN, and HBO. And while sports broadcasts can be watched on TVs and PCs, NFL content will be unavailable on mobile devices (i.e., smartphones and tablets) due to Verizon’s exclusive broadcast deal with the NFL.
Internet streaming is becoming increasingly popular; about 38% of millennial households now rely on alternatives to cable to watch traditional TV programming, and YouTube TV will have some stiff competition from the likes of SlingTV, DirecTV Now, and Sony’s Playstation VUE. But YouTube recently posted that users watch about one billion (that’s billion with a “b”) hours of content every day. YouTube TV looks poised for success on the back of the world’s most popular video platform.
YouTube is rolling out the new service to a select few major cities first before making it available nationwide. While YouTube hasn't given a set start date for service, the following cities can expect to see the service soon:
- New York, NY
- Los Angeles, CA
- Chicago, IL
- Philadelphia, PA
- Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX
- San Francisco/Oakland/San Jose, CA
- Washington DC/Maryland
- Boston MA/NH
- Atlanta, GA
- Houston, TX