fuboTV Reinstates Monthly Subscription Option Following Super Bowl; Will Annual Experiment Backfire?
Like the swallows returning to Capistrano, as it has every year since 2021, sports-focused live TV streaming service fuboTV has ended its annual “experiment” of removing its monthly subscription option in the leadup to the Super Bowl. Last week, Fubo switched its subscription offerings from monthly to quarterly for new customers, presumably in hopes of locking in fans looking to watch Super Bowl LVII for as long as humanly possible.
The prices for the three English-language packages that fuboTV offers have remained the same, the only difference is that last week, the streamer was requiring new customers to prepay for three months, following the seven-day, free trial. The platform’s Pro Plan runs $74.99 per month plus $11-$14 in regional sports network (RSN) fees. The quarterly rate for this option was $257.94.
The Elite Plan is $84.99 monthly plus the $11-$14 RSN fee, which came to a three-month total of $287.94. The Premier Plan is $94.99, in addition to the RSN fee, every month. On the quarterly system, that cost customers $317.94. With the switch back to monthly subscriptions, not only can customers now sign up for just a single month of service, but they can also again cancel their service at anytime.
“We have temporarily made our channel packages available to new subscribers as quarterly plans,” a Fubo spokesperson told The Streamable last week. “We’re always experimenting with our channel package offerings to better understand what our subscribers like.”
The timing of the streamer’s latest experiment comes just a few days after it added the Bally Sports RSNs to its channel line-up. While the additional sports content was undoubtedly appreciated by fans, it also resulted in the $11-$14 RSN fee for nearly every customer on the service. The addition also followed a recent $5 price increase, the second in an eight-month period.
With the annual experiment eliminating the monthly subscription option for new customers, Fubo is likely aiming to reduce the subscriber churn from viewers who sign up exclusively to watch the Super Bowl. However, given that there are far cheaper — even free — ways to stream the Big Game, the risks and rewards for the service don’t feel like they line up. By forcing interested customers to sign up for three months of service, instead of the standard one, fuboTV is taking a significant gamble in scaring off these sports fans not only for the Super Bowl, but long-term as well. If cord-cutters are left with a bad taste in their mouth over the quarterly gimmick, especially considering that streaming consumers have been conditioned to expect to pay monthly with the ability to cancel at any time, it could dissuade them from coming back to the service now that it has returned to its regular monthly rate.
Another issue with Fubo forcing customers to sign up for three months is that the next major event on the sports calendar is March Madness, and when it comes to the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, the streamer only has a limited number of the exciting opening-round games available. While CBS is part of fuboTV’s channel lineup and will carry the most important matchups later in the tournament, fuboTV doesn’t currently have access to the Warner Bros. Discovery-owned channels — TNT, TBS, truTV — that cover a bulk of the thrilling, frenetic first few rounds.
Fubo recently announced that it ended the third quarter of 2022 with 1.23 million subscribers. In comparison, it is still much smaller than the other major live TV streaming services Hulu + Live TV and YouTube TV, which both have roughly between 4 and 5 million subscribers apiece. So, doing anything to potentially alienate sports-loving customers could eventually backfire on Fubo.
Fubo is a live TV streaming service with about 90 channels for $74.99/month. This plan includes local channels, 25 of the top 35 cable channels, and regional sports networks (RSNs). In total, you should expect to pay about $85.98/month, after adding in their RSN Fee. Fubo was previously known as “fuboTV.”
The streaming service does not carry channels from WarnerMedia-owned (CNN, TBS, and TNT), A+E (A&E, History Channel, and Lifetime), and AMC Networks (AMC, BBC America, and WE tv).
Fubo is a great option for sports fans, especially those who want to stream local sports. They recently announced added Bally Sports RSNs to their channel lineup.
It is the least expensive option to get RSNs in many markets like Altitude, AT&T SportsNet Pittsburgh, AT&T SportsNet Rocky Mountain, AT&T SportsNet Southwest, Bally Sports Arizona, Bally Sports Carolinas, Bally Sports Detroit, Bally Sports Florida, Bally Sports Great Lakes, Bally Sports Indiana, Bally Sports Kansas City, Bally Sports Midwest, Bally Sports New Orleans, Bally Sports North, Bally Sports Ohio, Bally Sports Oklahoma, Bally Sports San Diego, Bally Sports SoCal, Bally Sports South, Bally Sports Southeast, Bally Sports Southwest, Bally Sports Sun, Bally Sports Tennessee, Bally Sports West, Bally Sports Wisconsin, Fox Sports Arizona, Fox Sports Carolinas, Fox Sports Detroit, Fox Sports Florida, Fox Sports Indiana, Fox Sports Kansas City, Fox Sports Midwest, Fox Sports New Orleans, Fox Sports North, Fox Sports Ohio, Fox Sports Oklahoma, Fox Sports Prime Ticket, Fox Sports San Diego, Fox Sports South, Fox Sports Southeast, Fox Sports Southwest, Fox Sports Sun, Fox Sports Tennessee, Fox Sports West, Fox Sports Wisconsin, Marquee Sports Network, MSG, MSG Sportsnet, NBC Sports Bay Area, NBC Sports Boston, NBC Sports California, NBC Sports Chicago, NBC Sports Northwest, NBC Sports Philadelphia, NBC Sports Philadelphia+, NBC Sports Washington, NBC Sports Washington+, NESN, Root Sports Northwest, and SportsNet NY.
Fubo also includes MLB Network, NBA TV, NFL Network, NFL RedZone , NHL Network, and beIN Sports (which is not available on most services). You can add Fox Soccer Plus as part of the International Sports Plus add-on for $6/month.
You can add the fubo Extra ($8) to add ~39 channels including Baby TV, Cooking Channel, DIY, and GSN.