As of Friday, AT&T officially unveiled their new live streaming TV service called WatchTV. The new service is available to current AT&T Wireless customers, with those who aren’t customers able to pay a $15 per month subscription fee to start streaming live TV.
According to an Engadget report on Friday (June 29), the new WatchTV streaming service has a total of 30 live channels as well as on-demand content. However, it does not currently offer any local or sports channels. It’s said that this helps keep the cost at $15, which is lower than competitors such as Sling TV which now starts at $25 per month for 30 channels.
The new service will reportedly work on a number of devices that people use. These include Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV or Fire TV Stick, and the Google Chromecast. In addition, it will work on “virtually every current smartphone, tablet or web browser, and certain streaming devices,” according to the company.
AT&T’s entry into the live streaming TV service makes sense as many other companies are there. Current services that are offered include DirecTV Now, Hulu with Live TV, YouTube TV, Sling TV, and PlayStation Vue, among others. More companies are trying to find ways to get competitive in the space by offering low-cost alternatives to the other services which generally start around $25 a month.
While the service has a low subscription cost it also has very little in terms of features to boast. Whereas some of the live streaming TV subscription services allow users to record content on a cloud DVR or watch on multiple devices at once, AT&T’s WatchTV does not.
In addition to releasing WatchTV, the company has also increased the monthly “administrative fee” their wireless customers pay. That could bring nearly $1 billion more a year in revenue to the company. According to a Los Angeles Times report, the new fee was introduced this past spring and will affect smartphones, tablets, and smartwatches using the AT&T wireless network.
As of Friday’s market close, the price of AT&T (T) stock was at $32.11, down $0.080 for the day. It’s still down from a 52-week high of $39.80 per share.