A new streaming service player has entered the game. Well, not so much new as newly-branded. Say goodbye to AT&T TV; say hello DirecTV Stream.
AT&T and global alternative asset firm TPG announced today that they have closed on their deal to establish DirecTV as a separate video company operating DirecTV, AT&T TV and U-verse video services.
DirecTV Stream will become the overall brand for all video streaming services previously launched by AT&T — except HBO Max, which is part of the pending WarnerMedia Discovery merger.
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At the end of Q2 2021, DirecTV had approximately 15.4 million premium video subscriber. Current AT&T satellite and streaming customers will automatically keep their video service, as well as bundled wireless, internet or HBO Max services (plus discounts) with no action required.
“This is a watershed moment for DirecTV as we return to a singular focus on providing a stellar video experience," said Bill Morrow, CEO, DirecTV. “Building on our recent momentum, we are well-positioned to bring unparalleled choice and value to all of our customers under one iconic brand, whether they beam it or stream it."
This is just the latest rebranding for AT&T TV streaming service, which used to be called AT&T TV Now and DirecTV Now. It offered live TV channels, with its lowest tier starting at $70.
The serviced touted itself as particularly suitable for sports fans, thanks to a lineup that included regional sports networks. And the DirecTV announcement calls itself the "undisputed leader in sports programming" and trumpeted the inclusion of NFL Sunday Ticket in its offering.
But that $70 monthly cost is $5 more than rival cable TV alternatives like YouTube TV and Hulu With Live TV. It remains to be seen if DirecTV Stream, now un-coupled from AT&T, will make its prices more competitive.