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PlayStation Vue is Shutting Down Live TV Streaming Service in January

Jason Gurwin

After reports about trying to find a buyer, it seems that PlayStation Vue has decided to shut down the service instead. The service, which debuted in 2015, was one of the first Live TV Streaming Services to launch — and is now the first vMVPD to shut down. The service will officially go dark on January 30th, 2020.

In a message to customers, John Kodera, Deputy President of Sony Interactive Entertainment:

Over four years ago, we made a bold decision to change the rules and revolutionize the traditional TV-viewing experience in the U.S. with PlayStation Vue. We set the bar high and sought to innovate an established industry by delivering a modern TV experience. By completely rethinking live and on demand television, we offered an incredible user experience that allowed viewers to discover and watch content in completely new ways.

Today we are announcing that we will shut down the PlayStation Vue service on January 30, 2020. Unfortunately, the highly competitive Pay TV industry, with expensive content and network deals, has been slower to change than we expected. Because of this, we have decided to remain focused on our core gaming business.

The company has had a difficult time growing the service, with the addition of new entrants like Hulu Live TV, YouTube TV, and AT&T TV NOW. While there had been on and off speculation about Sony’s interest in the business, PS Vue continued to make product improvements like “Multi-View” and has renewed deals with WarnerMedia, NBCU, and Disney in recent months.

The service was known for being the best option for sports fans because it included top cable channels, locals, regional sports networks, college sports channels, as well as NFL Network, NFL RedZone, NBA TV, MLB Network, and NHL Network — all for just $55 a month.

In July, PlayStation Vue raised the price of all plans — Access, Core, Elite, & Ultra — by $5 a month, following an industry-wide trend of annual increases. It came almost exactly one year after the company last raised the price of their plans by the same amount.

The news comes as PlayStation Vue, who had about 500,000 subscribers, had fallen behind vMVPDs like Sling TV and Hulu Live TV, who each have over 2 million subscribers respectively. YouTube TV has never disclosed subscribers, but reports place them at 1 million, while fuboTV is at around 300,000.

With PlayStation Vue never being able to gain the audience required, nor build a sustainable profitable business — it does not come as a surprise. Many have questioned whether any company should be in this business given that, outside of Sling TV, almost every service is losing money on new customers.

AT&T has continued to raise the price of plans, in an effort to essentially kill of their service. Dish Network has dropped almost all Regional Sports Networks from their Sling Blue plans and have given up added local affiliates to the service.

Fortunately, there are still deep pocketed players like Google (YouTube TV), Disney (Hulu Live TV), and upstarts, fuboTV and Philo, with funding from the entertainment industry still trying to make a dent in the cable industry. The question is, like Sony, how long will they keep losing money, before they need to show investors that they can turn a profit?

Want to Try a New Live TV Streaming Service?

  • You can read our full review comparing 8 different cord-cutting services including AT&T TV NOW, PlayStation Vue, fuboTV, Hulu Live TV, Philo, Sling TV, YouTube TV, and WatchTV.
  • Use our Channel Finder to add your favorite channels, shows, and sports teams and we’ll help find the best streaming service for you.
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