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YouTube TV: $35/Month ‘Skinny Bundle’ of TV Networks to Launch in Spring

Peter Kafka, reporting for Recode:

Like other new digital TV services, YouTube TV won’t offer every network that cable TV services provide; instead it will feature a “skinny bundle,” composed of the four broadcast networks — Fox, ABC, CBS and NBC — along with some of the cable channels related to the broadcasters. Which means you’ll also get networks like Fox News, ESPN and Bravo; YouTube execs says the base package will include about three dozen channels.

Sports are still a problem:

Also be aware that all of the digital TV services still have gaps in their coverage, usually around pro football: Deals — or lack of them — with local affiliates may affect your ability to watch your local NFL team play next fall. And none of the streaming TV services will let you watch football on your phone, because those rights, for now, are exclusive to Verizon.

YouTube TV’s pricing will make it hard/impossible for YouTube to turn a profit, given the carriage fees it has to shell out for the four big networks, but YouTube doesn’t seem concerned about that: Right now it wants to work on turning some of its billion-plus users into paying subscribers.

Seems crazy that Google, a company famous for providing its services free of charge, would have a paid bundle of video content before Apple does.

Thursday, 2 March 2017