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DIRECTV NOW Loses Another 83,000 Subscribers After Raising Prices, Slimming Plans

Jason Gurwin

AT&T announced their 2019 1st Quarter results today and as expected, DIRECTV NOW continues to see a major drop in subscribers.

After dropping 267,000 paid subscribers last quarter, the service lost another 83,000 subscribers this quarter. The Live TV Streaming Service peaked last Fall, when the company reached 1.85 million subscribers — but only a little more than 1.5 million remain.

The service is likely now the third largest vMVPD behind Sling TV, who at last reports had 2.41 million subscribers. Hulu Live TV announced in September that they had reached 1 million subscribers, but some have speculated that they are closing in on 2 million subscribers. YouTube TV has never disclosed subscribers, but reports place them at 1 million, PlayStation Vue at 400,000, and fuboTV at 250,000.

The dramatic drop in users does not come as a surprise. The company ended significant promotions for customers in the fall, while raising prices and discontinuing legacy plans earlier this year.

In January, John Stephens, AT&T Chief Financial Officer revealed that “at the end of the second quarter last year, about 500,000 DIRECTV NOW subscribers were on $10 per month promotional pricing plans.”

In mid-March, DIRECTV NOW introduced their PLUS ($50) and MAX ($70) plans, while removing their Live a Little, Just Right, Go Big, and Even More plans for new customers. Existing customers could keep their plan, but with a $10 price increase.

Their new PLUS and MAX plans gained HBO, but lost those from A&E, AMC, and Discovery/Scripps. The company has since dropped Nick Jr. and NFL Network from their legacy plans, while replacing them with Turner-owned Boomerang.

Despite the increased competition from services like Hulu Live TV, PlayStation Vue, YouTube TV, and fuboTV, they should get some relief since some others have also raised prices. In February, after adding networks from Discovery, Hulu Live TV increased the price of their service from $40 to $45. Soon after, fuboTV, after adding Viacom channels, raised the price of their service from $45 to $55 a month. Earlier this month, YouTube TV added Discovery/Scripps but increased their subscription from $40 to $50 a month.

Want to Learn More About Live TV Streaming Services?

  • You can read our full review comparing 8 different cord-cutting services including DIRECTV NOW, PlayStation Vue, fuboTV, Hulu Live TV, Philo, Sling TV, YouTube TV, and WatchTV.
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