New York -- DirecTV's initiative to hook-up its customers' set-top
boxes to the Internet -- dubbed the "Connected Home" -- could help close
the gap in Pay-Per-View revenue between the satellite giant and cable
operators, as well as boost what has been a surprising premium channel
business, chief financial officer Patrick Doyle said at an industry
conference here Tuesday.
Speaking at the UBS Global Media &
Entertainment conference here, Doyle said the goal is to have about 40%
of its set-top boxes connected to the Internet by the end of 2013. That
connection, coupled with the satellite giant's DirecTV Cinema initiative,
could give customers access to as many as 6,000 additional movie
titles. At the UBS conference, Doyle said hat DirecTV has lagged in the
pay-per-view category - he estimated that its PPV revenue is $2 to $3
less per month compared to cable operators - mainly because DirecTV has
fewer movie choices.
Doyle estimated that it costs between $65 to
$70 to connect a customer to the Internet - DirecTV is offering free
installs to customers that buy whole-home digital video recorders or
upgrade to HD-DVR service - but the payback is expected to be quick with
a boost in average monthly revenue per unit and lower churn.
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