AT&T has removed references to DIRECTV Now from the DIRECTV.com Home Page just two weeks after the site was redesigned to promote and sell the four-month-old live streaming service.
The scraping of DIRECTV Now from the Home Page that’s seen by new customers happened on April 15, just five days after the TVAnswerMan.com reported that AT&T was heavily promoting the live streaming service at DIRECTV.com which traditionally only sells satellite TV service.
I have asked AT&T for an explanation for why the company suddenly dropped its effort to sell DIRECTV Now to new customers who came to DIRECTV.com seeking satellite TV service. The telco has not responded as of this morning, but I will report back here if that changes.
The Shortest Redesign Ever?
On March 30, the DIRECTV.com Home Page began pitching new customers to subscribe to DIRECTV Now in addition to the company’s traditional satellite TV packages. See the March 30 redesign below:
This DIRECTV.com Home Page redesign lasted just two weeks.
This marked a significant change for AT&T, which owns DIRECTV. While Bloomberg News has reported AT&T would like DIRECTV Now to be the company’s primary TV service in three to five years, the telco has been careful in public not to interfere with the marketing effort of the satellite business. Some satellite customers might feel uncertain about the future of their dish-based systems if AT&T appeared to be trying to replace them with live streaming.
However, the March 30 redesign of DIRECTV.com clearly was aimed at persuading potential satellite TV customers to consider DIRECTV Now as an alternative. The new design for DIRECTV Now, which featured a DIRECTV Now order button in the center of the screen, looked very similar to the Home Page of DIRECTV Now.
According to Archive.org, which maintains historical records of web sites, DIRECTV.com’s Home Page did not even mention DIRECTV Now until March 30. (The live streaming service launched on November 30.).
But Archive.org’s records show that the DIRECTV.com Home Page redesign was suddenly dropped on April 15 and changed back to a more traditional page promoting satellite TV service. (See picture above.) The Home Page for new customers has not changed since the April 15 redesign of the redesign.
In my story on April 10, I speculated that AT&T may have felt on March 30 that it was time to give the live streaming service an added boost by highlighting it on DIRECTV’s main satellite TV page.
But after publication of my article, the company may have decided it was better to keep the satellite business the main focus of DIRECTV.com for reasons that remain unclear as of this morning.
DIRECTV.com’s programming package page also no longer lists DIRECTV Now as an option. However, the live streaming service is still mentioned on some site interior pages which can be found if you search for the term.
— Phillip Swann