YouTube TV hits 5 million

YouTube TV hits 5 million: When YouTube decided to build a cable TV-like product back in 2014, a big part of the goal was just to create a better relationship with Hollywood. After seven years of fighting with Viacom about widespread copyright infringement, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki wanted a way to work with networks and studios, not against them. She hired Christian Oestlien, who is now a VP of product management at YouTube, and gave him a broad mandate: “figure out what YouTube might be able to do with the larger media companies, with a focus around a television.”

Seven years later, YouTube TV, the company’s live cable streaming bundle, is a hit. The company announced today that 5 million people are currently either paying for or testing out YouTube TV, which isn’t the same as having 5 million subscribers but is nevertheless an impressive figure. It’s up 2 million subscribers since mid-2020, even as the number of cable subscribers in the US continues to dwindle, according to Variety — down to 46.2 million total in the first quarter of this year. Comcast, which is the biggest player in US cable, reported 17.6 million subscribers in the first quarter of this year, down almost two million over the last year. (Disclosure: Comcast, which owns NBCUniversal, is also an investor in Vox Media, The Verge’s parent company.)

YouTube TV Hits 5 Year Mark With 5 Million Subscribers… and Trailers

Meanwhile, the internet-cable options have been a mixed bag. Hulu with Live TV is growing nicely, with roughly 4.1 million subscribers, while Fubo, Sling, and a few others have mostly failed to catch on. All in all, five million subscribers make YouTube TV a small but real player in the TV market.

All these numbers, of course, pale in comparison to Netflix’s 220-million-plus subscribers or the 130 million or so who pay for Disney Plus. And in a time when the rise of on-demand streaming seems so inevitable, it’s easy to wonder how long YouTube TV’s “cable but better” plan can work. Oestlien says, well, a while. Live TV may be dying, but it’s going to take a while to croak. And there’s still money to be made: “TV, for all of its flaws, is still a lucrative business to our partners,” Oestlien says.

YouTube TV Hits 5 Year Mark With 5 Million Subscribers and Trailers

The truth is, YouTube TV mostly exists because of sports, which continues to be the most lucrative thing happening in the TV world — too lucrative, to become a fully streaming entity. “Most of the great sports programming still sits within the bundle,” Oestlien says, particularly with local broadcast channels and regional networks. Those are still the main reasons people sign up for YouTube TV or any of its competitors. It’s the cable bundle but in a better app, with more DVR storage, and you can cancel anytime. “It is a sports bundle, with a few compelling networks added to round it out and make it something that the whole household can enjoy.”

Okay, but won’t sports still eventually turn to stream? Already, leagues like the NFL and MLB are beginning to sell rights to companies like Amazon and Apple, Disney is increasingly all-in on ESPN’s digital future, and that trend seems likely to continue. Oestlien agrees but says that might make YouTube TV even more useful. As more leagues sign up with streaming services or even build their own, he says, turning on the game has become vastly more complicated. And expensive. “You just have to think about the pricing strategy that would have to be implemented there,” Oestlien says. “To make that all work, you end up in a place where a bundle makes a lot of sense.” Plus, as those rights get more expensive, he’s betting leagues and networks alike won’t balk at a company with deep pockets looking to get in on the action. YouTube has had its fair share of carriage disputes over the years, but the networks seem to need YouTube TV as much as the platform needs the content.

YouTube TV hits 5 million subscribers in 5 years

The real bet YouTube TV is making is that the bundle won’t die with cable. We’ve gone through a generation of unbundling, separating content from a single source into dozens of them. That has made the services cheaper and led to a huge uptick in great content, but it’s also made discovery harder and account management more complicated — and it’s not always clear how much money you’re saving. Oestlien and YouTube think that rather than break the bundle for good, someone just needs to build a better one.

There’s even a world in which Oestlien thinks YouTube TV could re-bundle the streaming services, bringing Peacock and Paramount Plus back together the way CBS and NBC used to be in the TV Guide. Right now, that sounds like a pipe dream: rather than working together, the streaming services are currently desperate to keep users inside their content universes. Netflix and others have even resisted being included in universal search tools because they’d rather you open the Netflix app to find something than just search for it on Just watch. But as those services proliferate, many of them might have a reason to look for a company with great distribution — and those deep pockets.

The streaming platform ‘YouTube TV’ hits 5 mn subscribers in 5 years

YouTube’s not the only company on this path, by the way. Apple and Amazon have both had success letting users subscribe to HBO, Starz, and others through their platforms; HBO, for instance, is reportedly about to come back to Amazon Channels after previously bailing on the service and losing 5 million subscribers in the process. And you can already sign up for HBO Max and access all its content within the YouTube TV app. Most services have opted not to be part of these catch-all systems so far, though.

The bundle is key not just to YouTube TV but to YouTube as a whole. Play out the current streaming trends long enough, and you can see how they could become a threat to everything YouTube does. What if Carpool Karaoke was only available on Peacock, and the only way to see John Oliver’s latest epic rant was on HBO Max? What if music videos went exclusively to Spotify and Apple Music? YouTube has a huge amount of original content, of course, but TikTok and Instagram, and others are desperate to change that as well. YouTube’s role as the internet’s largest distributor of other people’s videos is a huge part of the platform’s success, and a push toward more control and streaming could change that over time.

YouTube TV Hits 5 Year Mark With 5 Million Subscribers and Trailers

That might be why, talking to Oestlien, I get the sense that YouTube TV is still, in part, a tool for making nice with the content providers. Oestlien also oversees YouTube’s connected TV business, which means he helps broker deals to put all kinds of TV content onto the standard YouTube platform, and he seems decidedly unworried about losing access to content. “We’ve got 2 billion users worldwide,” he says. “So I think whether the content is distributed in a bundle, or wear over time we explore other ways of distributing it, I think YouTube can be a great partner there.” Even in sports, he says, YouTube is making deals both to stream games on YouTube TV and also to use leagues’ content in lots of other places on the platform.

Five years in, YouTube TV feels like both a hit and a hedge. But the truth is, if we’re ever going to get a wildly different future for TV, it’s still a ways off. There’s too much money, especially in sports, dedicated to keeping things the way they’ve been for decades. “Cable but better” might not always be the best idea in TV, but for now, it’s working pretty well.

Top stories

Streaming platform ‘YouTube TV’ hits 5 mn subscribers in 5 years

YouTube TV hits 5 mn subscribers in 5 years

YouTube TV Subscription Numbers After 5 Years Don’t Impress Me

YouTube TV now has topped 5 million subscribers and

https://techcrunch.com › 2022/07/12 › youtube-tv-now

3 days ago — YouTube’s Chief Product Officer Neal Mohan confirmed today a new milestone for YouTube’s live TV streaming service, YouTube TV

YouTube TV hits 5 million subscribers in 5 years – The Newsmen

https://thenewsmen.co.in › technology › youtube-tv-hit

2 days ago — Google-owned streaming platform YouTube has announced that YouTube TV is celebrating 5 million subscribers and testers in five years.

YouTube TV Hits 5 Million Subscribers; Becomes Largest Live 

https://thestreamable.com › news › youtube-tv-hits-5-m

YouTube TV Hits 5 Million Subscribers; Becomes Largest Live TV Streaming Service. Jul 12, 2022, 9:43 AM PDT – Matt Tamanini.

YouTube TV hits 5 mn subscribers in 5 years – Lokmat English

https://www.lokmattimes.com › Technology

2 days ago — San Francisco, July 13 Google-owned streaming platform YouTube has announced that YouTube TV is celebrating 5 million subscribers and 

Streaming platform ‘YouTube TV’ hits 5 mn subscribers in 5

https://www.newsncr.com › Entertainment

2 days ago — Baby Elephants Out And About With The Herd. Google-owned streaming platform YouTube has introduced that YouTube TV is celebrating 5 million

YouTube TV Eclipses 5 Million Subscribers – CNET

https://www.cnet.com › Tech › Services & Software

3 days ago — YouTube TV just hit 5 million subscribers, YouTube said Tuesday, including paying members and accounts on a free trial.

YouTube TV hits 5 mn subscribers in 5 years – IBTimes India

https://www.ibtimes.co.in › Technology

2 days ago — Google-owned streaming platform YouTube has announced that YouTube TV is celebrating 5 million subscribers and testers in five years.

YouTube TV hits 5 mn subscribers in 5 years – 5 Dariya News

https://www.5dariyanews.com › news › 378987-YouTu

2 days ago — Google-owned streaming platform YouTube has announced that YouTube TV is celebrating 5 million subscribers and testers in five years.

YouTube TV Hits 5 Year Mark With 5 Million Subscribers

https://www.droid-life.com › 2022/07/12 › youtube-tv

3 days ago — YouTube TV is turning 5 years old (launched February, 2017), which is pretty darn wild. We’ve come a long way from when the service first

YouTube TV hits 5 million subscribers and is looking Reddit

https://www.reddit.com › technology › comments › yo

2 days ago — It’s not really the future of anything, though. It’s the present for people who still need/want access to traditional cable channels but …

YouTube TV hits 5 million subscribers and is looking … – Reddit

YouTube TV Hits 5 Million Subscribers; Becomes Largest Live 

More results from www.reddit.com

Google’s broadcast service, YouTube TV hits an all-time high 

https://www.digitalinformationworld.com › 2022/07

2 days ago — However, Google didn’t mention the exact number of subscribers and non-paying trial consumers when it says it hits 5 million members. Currentl

YouTube TV Passes 5 Million Subscriber Mark Five Deadline

https://deadline.com › 2022/07 › youtube-tv-passes-5

3 days ago — YouTube TV has surpassed 5 million subscribers and free trial participants a bit more than five years after it launched.

YouTube TV celebrates 5 million subscribers by revealing

https://routenote.com › blog › youtube-tv-5-million-su

1 day ago — With 5 million subscribers and trialers, YouTube celebrates the milestone by announcing the top 5 most DVR’d shows and nostalgic TV series

YouTube TV Hits 5M Subscribers, Outpacing Hulu’s Live TV Tier

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com › business › digital

3 days ago — YouTube TV has surpassed 5 million paying and free trial subscribers, bringing the live TV service to the top of the list compared to other 

YouTube TV hits 5 million subscribers and is looking like the 

https://www.toi.news › Hollywood › Music › TV News

2 days ago — Seven years later, YouTube TV, the corporate’s reside cable streaming package deal, is a success. The corporate introduced as of late that 5 

CNET on Twitter: “YouTube TV just hit 5 million subscribers

https://twitter.com › CNET › status

3 days ago — YouTube TV just hit 5 million subscribers, YouTube announced Tuesday, including paying members and accounts on a free trial.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SOURCE URL

 

 

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.