Following in the footsteps of Verizon and Sling TV, AT&T announced today that it will launch three new over-the-top video service offerings later this year. These include a DirecTV Now product, available as an app and delivering much of the same content available through DirecTV today; DirecTV Mobile, which will offer a combination of "premium video and made-for-digital content" available again through an app; and DirecTV Preview, a free ad-supported service that will include some existing DirecTV content and video from other online sources including Otter Media, AT&T's joint venture organization run in partnership with The Chernin Group.
AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) has so far not revealed any details on pricing for the paid OTT offerings, but it has clearly emphasized the fact that all OTT services will be available to anyone and everyone, regardless of broadband provider. AT&T expects to launch the new OTT services in the fourth quarter.
For access to the full press release, see: AT&T Intros New OTT Video Services.
Many in the industry questioned AT&T's decision to buy a satellite TV company when it acquired DirecTV given the market trend toward IP video. However, it's clear that DirecTV's satellite infrastructure was only part of the company's appeal. Given today's OTT announcement, AT&T plans to use both the larger scale it now has with DirecTV, and its access to cheaper content licensing agreements, to take its video services to a wider, Internet-connected audience. (See AT&T Winds Down U-verse TV Era.)
— Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, Light Reading