Non-Sports Streaming Bundle Closer to Launch: Report

A low-price skinny bundle of entertainment cable networks that excludes the broadcasters and other carrying the biggest sports events, is expected to launch in the next few weeks, according to a published report.

Viacom, AMC Networks, A+E Networks, Scripps Networks Interactive and Discovery Communications are putting some of their networks into the over-the-top package, which will cost less than $20 a month, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Some of those companies have had marginal success getting into the skinny bundle streaming packages that have already been launched such as Sling TV, Hulu, YouTube TV and DirecTV Now. Those packages include broadcast networks and ESPN and cost about $40 a month.

The new service will be called Philo, named after both Philo Farnsworth, who invented television, and Philo, a company that specializes in streaming TV for college campuses.

The number of traditional pay-TV customers has been steadily dropping, raising concerns over lost revenue for both programmers and operators. Some media companies, such as the Walt Disney Co., have reported the digital virtual multichannel video programming distributors are offsetting the loss of traditional subscribers.

Some programmer including HBO and CBS, have made their networks available direct to consumer and a variety of other direct-to-consumer video products have launched or are in the process of being launched.

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.