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Video/Media

Verizon hooks up with Sling TV

Verizon's OTT video partnership play expanded today with word that the mobile and broadband service provider is offering up to three months of Sling TV, depending on the package, to new and existing wireless, Fios and 5G Home customers.

Under the promo, those customers can pick from three options: two free months of the Sling Blue or Sling Orange packages (regularly $35 per month); two free months of Sling International (there are 14 eligible services, costing up to $35 per month); or three free months of Sling Latino (up to $15 per month).

Per the fine print, Verizon's "Sling TV on us" offer is valid through February 19, 2022.

The marketing co-op is another prime example of Verizon's strategy to focus on connectivity and to distance itself from, or at least de-emphasize, its own Fios TV product. Verizon, which lost another 82,000 Fios TV subs in Q1 2021, has already been steering customers of its broadband-led "Mix & Match" packages to a pay-TV option featuring YouTube TV, the Google-owned OTT-TV service.

Verizon has also been sweetening some of its service offerings by bundling in subscription VoD streaming services. Following an earlier promo with Disney+, Verizon is now offering up to 12 free months of Discovery+ with eligible mobile plans.

"This partnership enables our customers to watch live television when, where and how they want," Erin McPherson, head of consumer content and partnerships at Verizon, said in a statement. "We are excited to provide even more value and choice as we welcome Sling TV to our ecosystem of incredible partners and services."

For Sling TV, the promo will expose the service to Verizon's base at a time when the OTT-TV service is seeking ways to restore subscriber growth. Sling TV lost 100,000 subscribers in Q1 2021, ending the period with 2.37 million.

Although the Verizon promotion should bring in a batch of new Sling TV customers, the challenge for the streaming service will be holding on to them once the free period ends.

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— Jeff Baumgartner, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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