Soccer fans who stream their favorite team might be in for a disappointing discovery when they next fire up their live TV streaming service as YouTube TV informed subscribers on Monday that they were no longer carrying bilingual futbol channel GolTV as part of the platform’s Sports Plus add-on package.
The first live streamer to hit 5 million subscribers, YouTube TV did not give any indication was to what led to dropping the channel, but more often than not, these decisions come down to disputes over carriage fees. With the cost of live sports rights constantly rising, GolTV very well might have demanded more money from YouTube TV than Google was willing to give.
In the email to subscribers, YouTube said that live content from GolTV — as well as anything that had previously been recorded on the cloud DVR — was no longer available as of Friday, July 29.
Despite the loss of the channel, a representative for YouTube TV indicated that no other lineup changes were imminent. “We are sorry to share this news, but please know that at this time no other changes have been made to your YouTube TV service,” YouTube TV said.
GolTV was one of the first channels to actively serve both English and Spanish-speaking audiences when it launched in 2003. The channel maintains one main programming lineup, but with both English and Spanish options, either as separate channels or through the secondary audio program (SAP) feature, depending on the provider.
The network broadcasts more than 1,000 soccer matches every year from Portugal Primeira Liga, Paraguayan Primera División, Uruguayan Primera División, Ecuadorian Serie A matches, and other leagues from around the world.
GolTV was dropped by Verizon Fios in 2018 and Cox Cable the following year. In May, YouTube TV added a Spanish-language plan and add-on option in an effort to court the underserved Spanish-speaking population in the streaming space.
YouTube TV is a live TV streaming service with more than 60 channels for US$ 64.99/month. This plan includes local channels, 32 of the top 35 cable channels, and regional sports networks (RSNs) in select markets.
With the recent addition of Viacom channels (BET, MTV, Comedy Central, etc.) to the service, they are only without Hallmark and A+E Networks (Lifetime, History, A&E).
YouTube TV offers select 4K content, including some live sports and on-demand shows, as part of their 4K Plus add-on. The 4K Plus add-on is $19.99 a month and also includes offline downloads and unlimited streams on your home network.
If you want a cheaper service with many of the entertainment channels on YouTube TV, you can subscribe to Philo which includes A+E, Discovery, Viacom, Hallmark, and other channels for just $20 a month after a 7-Day Free Trial.