Sling TV has been pretty much been the go to service for Roku users and cord cutters if they were looking to replicate their cable experience with the top linear TV channels. It looks like now another competitor will be entering that space.
According to many reports out of CES 2016 a new linear TV over the top service will be launching in 2016 called Vidgo. The service is said to not only carry traditional cable channels but also local over the air (OTA) channels as well. Much like Sony’s OTT linear service Sony Vue, this service is expected to roll out in limited cities before making a full national expansion.
The Service will be available according to reports on Roku, Fire TV, Chromecast and more.
The Drum quotes Robert Kostensky, VIDGO president and co-founder as saying, “VIDGO combines the best of existing online streaming services with live television and VOD. VIDGO is the lowest cost solution to deliver the most expansive catalog of live linear television and VOD to all devices and connected televisions.”
Kostensky is a former higher up at Direct TV so it’s very likely he understands the challenges of licensing both local and national channels, what remains to be seen is if he also understands the angst against bundling by cord cutters. If we are still left with enormous bundles the new service will only be attractive to those who want to watch on the go from any device, but not so much for those who want to only pay for what they want to watch.
Cost could also be a factor. Though details were few and far between at CES 2016, many are reporting the service will be somewhere between Sling TV’s $20 a month and $50 a month. Again price might not be an issue if the consumer is choosing what they are paying for and not being told to pay for stuff they do not want. Currently there has not been any announcement on number of channels being offered or how they will be packaged.
Finally user experience will be a huge factor as well. Many people love Sling TV but do not like the many delays while watching live programming such as sports. While many understand Sling is breaking new ground by streaming live sports to such a wide audience, it still doesn’t make people feel good about paying for it. Sling has made great strides and the experience is getting better. Sling is backed by Dish Network and has struggles, will a startup without a huge corporate backer fare better? If it offers better streaming it will be a definitive edge, if it offers worse, it could fall out the gate.
One thing is for sure the announcement is good news for cord cutters. More competition means more innovation.
Will you give Vidgo a try? Comment below.