Cox joins a growing list of video service providers who are offering less expensive video packages, hoping to connect with more value conscious consumers. The new offer does not include popular, and expensive, channels like ESPN and MTV.
As a panelist at the recent Broadband Unlimited session at this year’s CES, I commented that programmers may be their own worst enemy, given the continuing rise of programming costs that make their way to consumer’s monthly cable bill. As a result, I believe we are approaching a point where consumers will say enough is enough with their rising cable bills and cut back. The evidence of this behavior is starting to show itself with declining video subscriptions from major MSOs. Certainly not at an alarming pace, but worth noting nonetheless.
The Cox TV Economy offer includes a scaled down channel line-up (and a single SD receiver) for $35/month. While popular channels like ESPN and MTV are excluded, the package does include CNN, Discovery, Comedy Central, and a host of other important channels. The package also includes some HD feeds, but the subscriber will have to upgrade to an HD receiver at additional cost. You can see the complete channel line-up here (by way of Light Reading).
This experiment by Cox and others will help us draw more firm conclusions regarding consumer behavior. If these economy packages are marketed well and they see significant adoption, will it catch the eye of programmers and slow their insatiable demand (greed?) for higher and higher programming costs?