YouTube TV has become the latest live streaming service to raise its price, bumping its base $40-a-month plan to $49.99 a month for both existing and new customers, effective today.
The service tried to soften the blow by announcing it’s adding eight Discovery-owned channels: Discovery, HGTV, Motor Trend, Food Network, TLC, ID, Animal Planet, and the Travel Channel. And by year’s end, YouTube TV said, it will add the OWN channel.
The additions will give YouTube TV more than 70 live channels as well as free unlimited DVR storage space, three simultaneous streams, and six accounts per households.
However, that may not be enough for cost-conscious consumers seeking to avoid the rising cost of cable and satellite TV services. While the average cable and satellite bill is still higher than YouTube TV, the difference between the two is shrinking, which could give prospective and current customers pause.
DIRECTV Now, which recently raised its base price to $50 a month, reported losing a net of 267,000 subscribers in last year’s fourth quarter after ending promotional offers which allowed some customers to pay as little as $10 a month for the first three months.
The live streamers have concluded that it can’t generate profits unless they raise prices to offset the escalating cost of acquiring programming. FuboTV also recently raised its base price, from $44.99 a month to $54.99 a month, and Hulu increased the cost of its live service by $5 in February.
YouTube TV said existing customers will see the price increase in their bills next month.
— Phillip Swann