YouTube (and thus Google, its owner) is the latest to jump on the subscription video services bandwagon. Its newest service, YouTube TV, is a live streaming video service vying for cord cutters’ attention. Google obviously wants to compete with Sling TV and Playstation Vue.
The new service offers a family-sized six accounts for $35 a month; however, it only supports up to three separate viewers at once. Channels include the Big Four broadcast networks (ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox). Other channels include the Disney Channel, SyFy, Freeform (formerly ABC Family), FX, ESPN, NBCSN, and more. Users will also get their own cloud-based DVR.
YouTube TV will also carry YouTube Red’s library of shows. However, it looks like customers won’t get access to Google Play Music (like YouTube Red subscribers receive).
The downsides to the new service so far:
- Initially, it’s only launching in New York, Philadelphia, and Los Angeles, since the deals to live stream broadcast networks is via streaming those cities’ network affiliates.
- It’s missing content from Scripps (HGTV), Viacom (Nickelodeon), and Time Warner (Cartoon Network).
The limitation to only three cities at launch seems like a big flaw, never mind they’re only cities on either coast. (No love for flyover country, or at least Chicago?) Also, the missing cable channels might reduce its appeal. Parents who want their kids to see “SpongeBob” (on Nick) or fans of AMC’s “The Walking Dead” will want to stick with other options for now.
Still, those are things that can be fixed as time (and more cities) roll on. So far, news reception seems somewhat positive, with Consumer Reports showing enthusiasm. Thus, YouTube TV might be of interest to cord cutters once it either gains more channels and/or becomes nationally available.
Do any of you have an interest in Google’s new service, or subscribe to Sling TV, or other similar services?