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Philo’s Andrew McCollum Says Price Comparisons to T-Mobile’s TVision Aren’t ‘Exactly Fair’

Stephanie Sengwe

On Oct. 27, T-Mobile announced the launch of their streaming service, TVision. The service, which comes in two tiers—TVision VIBE and TVision Live—aims to give people the content they want, without having to pay for any extra programming.

While the concept is well-intended, it’s launch upset a few of T-Mobile's partners. Last week, we reported that Discovery, ViacomCBS, and NBCU all filed complaints to T-Mobile over the packaging of their content in their TVision service. Our sources said that Discovery and ViacomCBS feel they should be in TVision Live ($40) in addition to TVision Vibe ($10), while NBCU believes their local affiliates should be included in TVision Vibe in addition to TVision Live.

Though the drama is slowly overshadowing their efforts, if the model is proven to be successful, TVision could essentially compete with Philo, as it offers customers a skinny bundle for an affordable price. During Fierce Video’s StreamTV Show virtual conference today, Philo CEO Andrew McCollum revealed that while T-Mobile may be in some hot water right now, the concept of TVision is solid.

“I think the offering from T-Mobile is really interesting. This idea of splitting broadcast and sports makes a ton of sense. That is the direction the TV bundle needs to move in. If we were going to offer broadcast and sports I think we would really seek to do it as a separate package. That part’s very smart,” he stated. “They seem to be in hot waters with their programming partners, so maybe the approach they took wasn’t calculated exactly right, but in spirit I think the concept makes sense.”

On the price point however, McCollum believes TVision sacrificed some key elements in order to get their bundles that low. Philo has unlimited DVR storage, but you can only keep shows for 30 days. The service is also available on Roku, Fire TV, Apple TV, Android TV, iOS as well as Android and allows you to stream on up to three devices simultaneously.

In comparison, TVision VIBE is not available on any other devices. The service also offers only 100 Hours of Cloud DVR which you have to pay an additional $5 for. Their bundle is also significantly smaller, offering 34 channels, while Philo houses over 60 channels.

“Comparing the prices directly isn’t exactly fair. They don’t include DVR for $10, you’re paying an extra $5 and it’s not an unlimited DVR it’s only 100 hours. Also, you only get two streams instead of three and it’s not available on Roku, it’s only available to T-Mobile postpaid customers. So there’s a lot of caveats to get to the price that they launched at,” McCollum explained.

“We still feel really good about where we are on the market and maybe someone will come and undercut us on price, but we really try and focus on what we’re doing and try to deliver the best service we can.”

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