Just a week ago, details began to leak out that Comcast — a company which has previously said it has no interest in delivering streaming TV — was in fact considering launching a streaming TV service similar to Sling TV. Now it seems that another major company — Verizon — is considering a streaming service of its own, Bloomberg reports.
While Comcast’s interest in streaming seems to be purely a backup plan, offered only to customers outside of the areas in which it offers cable service, Verizon appears to have much more immediate action in mind. According to Bloomberg’s anonymous sources, Verizon could launch its service as soon as this summer.
Adding some confusion to this news is that Verizon offers several products that, while not similar to live TV streaming services like Sling TV or PlayStation Vue, aren’t entirely dissimilar either. The company offers go90 — a YouTube-like streaming service with content aimed at teens — as well as FiOS TV for its fiber internet customers. This streaming service wouldn’t be part of either of the above services, nor would it replace them.
Because Verizon has yet to confirm whether it plans to launch the rumored service, details are scarce as to what it might offer in terms of pricing or available channels. When CBS recently announced that it had extended its contract with the company, the deal was said to include rights for “future digital platforms, with specifics to be released at a later date,” so it seems likely that CBS-owned channels could be part of Verizon’s offering.
Despite having the budget to throw at this type of service, Verizon may have slightly more trouble than its competitors in securing deals. When the company launched its Custom TV service in 2015, it faced backlash from some providers, meaning it launched without channels like ESPN. How this, as well as upcoming live TV streaming products from Hulu and YouTube, will affect Verizon’s planned launch remains to be seen, but as far as viewers are concerned, more options are certainly better than fewer options.