A Windstream MobiTV deal announced today will give Windstream a new method of video delivery that will use a customer’s broadband connection in combination with a MobiTV Connect app instead of a traditional IPTV or cable-based approach. Windstream will continue to use its Kinetic brand for the offering, which will be known as Kinetic TV.
The MobiTV Connect approach is a “much better platform that allows for a cloud DVR,” said Geoff Levy, senior vice president of marketing and product for the consumer, small and medium-sized business segment at Windstream, in an interview. Customers will be able to watch content on a range of devices and will able to “see most content on the go,” he explained.
The new Kinetic TV offering will launch initially in “select” north Georgia markets, followed by the company’s Lincoln, Nebraska markets but is expected to be available across Windstream’s 18-state footprint this year.
Windstream MobiTV Offering
To use the new Kinetic TV offering, customers will download an app that can work on Apple and Android devices, as well as smart TVs and Amazon’s Fire TV and Fire Stick. For customers who don’t have an appropriate device, Windstream will make one available for rent or purchase. A set-top box is not required to use the offering. Capabilities supported will include 4K/HEVC, cloud DVR, replay TV and voice control.
“The service will be a direct replacement” for the company’s existing pay-TV offerings, said Levy. “It will have the same channel lineup and the prices will be the same.”
Windstream will continue to be responsible for content negotiations, Levy said.
Windstream will continue to support customers that want to continue using existing services delivered over IPTV or cable TV infrastructure, but those offerings will no longer be available to new customers.
Customers will need a broadband connection supporting speeds of at least 10 Mbps to use Kinetic TV, Levy noted. That amount of bandwidth will support two concurrent high-definition video streams, he said.
He noted that there is a small percentage of Windstream’s customer base that cannot get speeds of 10 Mbps. Those customers will continue to have the option of purchasing DirecTV through Windstream.