Verizon gave a peek into their TV Everywhere plans with the announcement of a content deal with Time Warner. “Beginning in June, FiOS TV customers will automatically receive free, unlimited online access to popular content from Time Warner’s Turner networks – TNT and TBS – with plans to bring the same content to mobile devices in the near future,” says Verizon in a press release.
This new Time Warner content joins HBO and Epix on Verizon’s FiOS TV Online portal. Verizon says they’re working with other programmers as well, including FOX News, CBS, MTV Networks, Hallmark Channel, Smithsonian Channel, and the Tennis Channel with plans to make this content available for FiOS TV Online “soon.” Starting in June, authenticated FiOS customers will be able to access programming from TNT and TBS stations online, 24 hours after the content airs on traditional television.
For now, this content is only available for computers or laptops. Verizon promises mobile access is coming soon, but made no mention of devices like the Apple iPad.
With this move, Verizon is slightly ahead of telcoTV brethren AT&T, who recently launched U-verse Online. But U-verse Online acts more like a Hulu knock off (in fact it gets much of its content from Hulu) than a TV Everywhere project and is open to anyone – at least for now. Verizon is slightly behind Comcast with this initiative. Comcast has a more aggressive TV Everywhere product with Fancast Xfinity.
Verizon is sure to hear from critics on FiOS TV Online. The fact that you have to wait 24 hours to view this newest content isn’t exactly an “anytime, anyplace” experience, as their press release suggests this product delivers on. It still exerts a level of control to online content access – a control factor which some critics point to as a fatal flaw with some TV Everywhere initiatives.
Companies like Comcast seem more willing to try to get out in front of the content anywhere curve, although their product has its critics as well. DISH Network also offers a TV Everywhere product which is enabled through their Sling powered set-top-box.
All of these projects are classic examples of trial and error. Traditional multichannel subscription video providers are trying to build products that they hope will provide enough perceived value to the subset of subscribers who are at risk to ‘cut the cable cord’ in favor of other less expensive options online. No one has the answer yet. The ‘silver bullet’ as we say, is elusive or maybe even non-existent.
3 thoughts on “Verizon Outlines Initial TV Everywhere Plans With FiOS TV Online”
I like the idea of V & AT&T because they can give you the mobile side (quad play) versus cable can't do that. That is the very reason I went to an alternative carrier than Cable. Long term cable without wireless phone service company will ultimately loose ground period and or possibly be out of business in 10 to 20 years. . Especially when the young folks mature they have been primarily wireless to begin with, I truely don't know of any late teens and or twenty's kids with a wired service……….
Good perspective, although not sure how long you'll see that wireless advantage. Most major MSOs are actively pursuing a wireless strategy. Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Brighthouse have hitched their wagon to Clearwire and WiMAX — I assume at some point you'll see handsets from them that can do VoIP. Cox is building their own 3G wireless network, with a 4G migration path.
Will it be too little, too late for the cable wireless efforts?
Late or not, Verizon is acting – and it's with the right parties, the content providers. The cable operators invested in Clearwire, and make no mistake, they will push TV Everywhere over it. But remember, VZ has been laying a lot of groundwork, with their huge backbone upgrades and deployment of LTE, and that will help neutralize Clearwire. It will get really interesting when VZ "out-TV-Everywheres" the TV Everywhere crowd, what with FiOS TV to a set-top, plus TV Everywhere to a PC/Laptop, to a mobile smartphone (over – take your pick – LTE or V-Cast), and then, the newly-revealed potential for a VZ/Google tablet. It's a real land grab right now and they know it's a race against the clock.