According to the CEO of AT&T, Randall Stephenson, the company will soon be branching out into the content streaming market with a live TV service called AT&T Watch.
The CEO has said that AT&T Watch is a “skinny bundle” of channels that offers cheap, sports-free entertainment for only $15-per-month, in addition to a free subscription to AT&T Wireless phone plan. Should all this pan out as intended, it could put AT&T Watch as one of the best values money-wise for streaming services on the market today.
Strangely, Stephenson decided to announce this new service while on the witness stand. AT&T is currently facing trial over the $85 billion merger with Time Warner the company is currently undertaking, with claims that it would put the joint enterprise in position for a monopoly in numerous industries. It would also potentially grant the company, which would have control over a number of major television channels as well as the ability to broadcast them through its streaming and cable services, the ability to hike prices on competitor networks as a way of forcing customers to drop those channels in favor of their own.
The announcement of AT&T Watch was meant as a rebuttal to accusations of the ever-increasing prices for DirecTV, Stephenson seeming to claim the company’s own service as a form of competition or an alternative customers could choose (despite the obvious oversight in that the same company owns both options).
What actual content AT&T Watch will offer viewers has not yet been announced by the company, as there was no list of potential channels given out during the hearing. At this point, the only piece of public knowledge regarding the service is its price and the fact it will not offer sports channels in its standard form. Additionally, while no exact date for when the service will launch was discussed, Stephenson said that the company hopes to beginning offering itself to customers within the next several weeks.