AT&T says that the number of local channels on DIRECTV Now will double this week from its debut on November 30.
The telco, which owns DIRECTV, says the local channel additions this week will include:
* Expansion of ABC to more than 30 new markets, including Atlanta, Dallas-Fort Worth and Boston.
* Expansion of NBC to 4 new markets, including Kansas City, MO., Salt Lake City, Milwaukee and West Palm Beach, FL.
* Expansion of FOX to Juneau, AK.
DIRECTV Now subscribers have reported on social media sites that many of the channels were added over the weekend.
AT&T says the additions means that DIRECTV Now has at least one local channel available in 70 percent of U.S. households.
However, the live streaming service still does not carry any CBS affiliates, and subscribers in many markets have only one network affiliate in their lineups (ABC, Fox or NBC).
Still, the local channel expansion should help DIRECTV Now compete more effectively against live streaming rivals such as Sling TV, Hulu Live, PlayStation Vue and FuboTV. The service had a strong debut with AT&T saying more than 200,000 people signed up during the first month. However, since then, subscriber growth has lagged due to a variety of technical issues and other obstacles.
“By the end of August, DIRECTV NOW plans to triple the number of local live channels available since launch. Users in more markets will see live local ABC, NBC and FOX channels,” AT&T says in its press release.
— Phillip Swann