FuboTV Launches Updated Multiview Feature on Apple TV

FuboTV, the sports-themed online TV streaming platform, Oct. 22 announced it has updated its multiview feature on Apple TV. Now, subscribers can watch up to four channels simultaneously, doubling the feature’s previous capability of two channels.

The updated multiview feature is currently available to 10% of fuboTV subscribers and will roll out to 100% in the coming days. The launch coincides with the kick-off of college football’s Big 10 season. Multiview is especially popular with sports viewers as it easily enables watching multiple games simultaneously without switching channels. The company was also the first online TV service to stream in 4K resolution.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

FuboTV’s sports package offers subscribers access to 50,000+ live sporting events annually as well as news and entertainment content. In addition to college football, fuboTV has soccer coverage, near-total NFL coverage and significant MLB, NBA and NHL coverage. FuboTV is the only online TV service streaming 11 Thursday Night Football games this season and the 2020 World Series in 4K.

 

FuboTV Getting ESPN, Disney Television Content

Disney Media Networks has inked a distribution agreement with FaceBank Group to deliver news, sports and entertainment content from ESPN and Walt Disney Television to streaming platform fuboTV.

Beginning this summer, customers who subscribe to fuboTV’s fubo standard base package will have access to ABC, ABC News Live, Disney Channel, Disney Junior, Disney XD, Freeform, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN3, in-market for SEC Network and ACC Network, FX, FXX and National Geographic. Additional networks will also be available on fuboTV’s other packages, including out-of-market for SEC Network and ACC Network, ESPNU, ESPNEWS, ESPN Deportes, FXM, Fox Life, Nat Geo Wild, Nat Geo Mundo and BabyTV.

The deal includes both live television and VOD.

“With the addition to our lineup of the ESPN suite of channels, we continue to make good on our promise to sports fans to be the undisputed home of professional and college sports,” David Gandler, co-founder and CEO of fuboTV, said in a statement.  “Fubo is equally delighted to add the storied Disney, ABC, FX and Nat Geo networks to round out a robust programming portfolio for the whole family to enjoy.”

“Launching Disney’s networks strengthens our sports-focused live TV platform and brings a diverse range of content for the entire family,” Ben Grad, head of content strategy and acquisition for fuboTV, said in a statement. “Our base package offers consumers significant value, while consumers who want even more great sports and entertainment content can access it with our premium packages. As live sports return but without spectators, streaming games at home will be even more important than ever. We’re thrilled to bring more sports, as well as entertainment and news, to our consumers this summer.”

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

“Adding Disney’s array of networks across news, sports and entertainment content with ABC, Disney Channel, ESPN, FX, and Nat Geo delivers a more comprehensive channel lineup and tremendous value to customers’ subscriptions,” Sean Breen, EVP of platform distribution for Disney Media Networks, said in a statement. “With fuboTV’s multiple access points across all major streaming platforms and a competitive price point, we continue to serve a growing audience that consumes video on multiple screens and attract new customers into the pay TV ecosystem.”

Follow us on Instagram

In April, fuboTV merged with FaceBank, combining fuboTV’s direct-to-consumer live TV streaming platform for cord-cutters with FaceBank’s IP in sports, movies and live performances.

FuboTV Names Simone Nardi CFO

Live streaming platform fuboTV has named Simone Nardi CFO.

Nardi is based in New York City and reports directly to CEO David Gandler.

As CFO, Nardi leads all financial operations and strategy for fuboTV. He joins the streaming platform as it prepares to uplist to a major stock exchange following its merger in April with FaceBank Group.

“Simone has already been instrumental in guiding fuboTV through our recent merger,” Gandler said in a statement. “With his deep experience managing finance and strategy for companies undergoing transformations in their business, Simone is an integral new member of fuboTV’s executive team.”

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

“I’m extremely honored to join the outstanding team at fuboTV,” Nardi said in a statement. “It’s an exciting time to be joining a proven leader in the media industry at the forefront of the streaming revolution. I look forward to playing a key role as the company continues to expand, drive cost efficiencies and growth and focus on delivering shareholder value.”

Prior to joining fuboTV, Nardi served as SVP and CFO, international for lifestyle content producer Scripps Networks Interactive. In this role, Nardi was responsible for all finance and strategic planning for the company’s international business across Canada, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and Latin America. In this role, Nardi was also responsible for leading the company’s international program licensing business and coordinating branding, marketing, technical operations and digital outside of the United States. He was also a member of the board of directors of Scripps’ joint ventures with the BBC in the United Kingdom and with Corus Entertainment in Canada.

Previously, Nardi served as SVP and CFO for NBC Universal’s international channels and television production businesses where he helped build and grow the international TV production operation for NBC Universal, green-lighting and monetizing key franchises such as “Downton Abbey.” Previously, he served as CFO of NBC Universal’s business development division in New York, where he assumed a lead role in launching Hulu.

Nardi began his career with General Electric in Italy and the United States.

FuboTV merged with FaceBank Group in April 2020, combining fuboTV’s direct-to-consumer live TV streaming platform for cord-cutters with FaceBank’s technology-driven IP in sports, movies and live performances.

Fubo TV Comes to Xbox One

Online TV service FuboTV is launching its first app on Microsoft’s Xbox One video game platform. With the new app, Xbox users (with a $54.99 subscription) can stream sports, news and entertainment TV channels, VOD movies and TV shows. Xbox One X and Xbox One S users can also stream 4K content.

FuboTV features include replaying the last live channel watched when the app is launched. Users can flip through other channels while watching live video. They can also browse recommended sports, news and entertainment content — both live and on demand.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Subs can DVR entire series, including upcoming episodes, and monitor available cloud DVR storage via a progress bar. All DVR content is available in perpetuity until the user deletes it.

Fubo also lets up to six users within a subscription personalize their viewing options. Each user can create their own profile, favorite channels (which sets the preferred order of how channels appear in the Electronic Program Guide) and DVR the content they want to watch. Personalized content recommendations for each profile will be launched soon.

Follow us on Instagram

Xbox users can subscribe to fuboTV by navigating to the app from the Microsoft Store on Xbox. Additionally, fuboTV will optimize Xbox’s faster load times to ensure less buffering such as when the user selects a live new channel to watch.

“Microsoft makes it easy for us to bring our HTML5 TV application to their platform,” Geir Magnusson Jr., CTO, fuboTV, said in a statement. “We’ll continue to iterate on the app to leverage even more Xbox One features. We look forward to bringing fuboTV’s HTML 5 TV application to even more platforms, including other gaming consoles and smart TVs.”

Fubo Sports Network Launches on Pluto TV

The fubo Sports Network, the live, free-to-consumer linear sports network, has launched on ViacomCBS-owned AVOD service Pluto TV.

The launch makes the fubo Sports Network available on more than 75 million devices through a distribution network that also includes free platforms LG Channels, Samsung TV Plus, The Roku Channel, Vizio Channels and Xumo, as well as fuboTV’s subscription service.

Launched last fall by live TV streaming platform fuboTV, the fubo Sports Network has launched original talent-driven programming produced by fuboTV and distribution of a fuboTV-owned channel off of its platform. In addition to its own original programming (“No Chill with Gilbert Arenas,” “Call It a Night with Julie Stewart-Binks,” “Drinks with Binks” and “The Cooligans”), the fubo Sports Network also carries live sports and original programming from partners including USA Today, FanDuel, The Players Tribune, Stadium, VSiN and CampusLore.

“We’re excited to bring fubo Sports Network to even more sports fans through Pluto TV, the largest free streaming distributor in the country,” said Min Kim, VP, business development, fuboTV, in a statement. “Since launching fubo Sports Network less than a year ago, we’ve built a differentiated offering for a dedicated audience who tune in for live games, original sports programming, sports docs and movies. We look forward to bringing Pluto TV fans 24/7 sports coverage on and off the field with a unique point of view.”

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

“In challenging times like these, with many live sporting events on hold, our current channel lineup featuring classic live sporting events, news, documentaries/series and sports-themed movies, have proven to be a great alternative for fans in search of what to watch,” said Amy Kuessner, Pluto TV’s SVP, content strategy and global partnerships, in a statement. “We are incredibly excited to welcome the fubo Sports Network to Pluto TV as it brings even greater dimension to our sports programming and fanfare to all who revel in watching the competitive arena.”

Average U.S. Home Streaming Bundle Sweet Spot: $20-$21

With the field of subscription streaming video services growing, new data shows the average U.S. household would spend $20 to $21 monthly for combined platforms — slightly more than 20% of the average pay-TV bundle ($96.18).

Soda.com, in a survey of 1,000 consumers who stream video in the home conducted Nov. 7-9, 2019, found the majority (32%) of respondents would pay $20 or more monthly for combined streaming services, while 30% would prefer not to bundle services and 14% would not pay more than $10 for a bundle.

Notably, 44% of respondents said they use two or more streaming services per week.

With SVOD services ranging from $4.99 for Apple TV+ to $15 for HBO Max, which launches in May, consumers are faced with the challenge of mixing and matching services or prioritizing services based on the user’s favorite content.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Netflix is projecting 61.2 million domestic subscribers at the end 2019, with actual figures to be released later this month. That’s more than 80% of the combined tally predicted for Hulu (28.5 million), Apple TV+ (10 million), Disney+ (15 million), CBS All Access (8 million), HBO Now (8 million) and ESPN+ (3.5 million), according to CNBC.

In August 2019, there were about 86.5 million traditional pay-TV households — a number that is projected to drop to 73 million by 2023, according to Statista. Most pay-TV subs continue their subscriptions based on habit, premium channels and sports.

Follow us on Instagram

The survey contends Netflix remains the best overall streaming service followed by YouTube TV. Sports fans favored sports-themed fubo TV or ESPN+, whiles families sought Amazon Prime Video (Prime membership and free shipping) and Disney+.

Movie fans chose HBO Now (soon HBO Max) and Hulu, while budget-minded respondents opted for Sling TV and Hoopla.

 

Sling TV Offsets Q3 Dish Subscriber Losses

Sling TV is back.

Dish Network Nov. 7 said it added 214,000 Sling subscribers in the third quarter, ended Sept. 30. That compared to a gain of 26,000 Sling subs in the previous-year period. Sling ended the period with 2.69 million subs, up 13.5% from 2.37 million subs at the same time last year.

Launched in 2015 as the first standalone online TV service, Sling helped create a market that now includes YouTube TV, AT&T TV Now, Philo TV and Fubo TV, among others.

Meanwhile, the legacy Dish satellite TV service continued to shrink, losing 66,000 subs in the period, a significant improvement from 367,000 subs lost last year. Dish ended the period with 9.49 million Dish subs, down from 10.28 million subs at the same time last year.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Net pay-TV subs increased approximately 148,000 subs in the third quarter, compared to a decline of approximately 341,000 subs in the third quarter of 2018. To mitigate pay-TV sub losses, Dish unveiled a Flex Pack skinny bundle consisting of more than 50 channels and the choice of one of 10 themed add-on channel packs, which include, among others, local broadcast networks and kids and general entertainment programming.

“While we plan to implement these and other new marketing efforts for our Dish TV services, there can be no assurance that we will ultimately be successful in increasing our gross new Dish TV subscriber activations,” the company disclosed in its regulatory filing.

Online TV Fortunes Shift as Sony Reportedly Looks to Sell PlayStation Vue

With Dish Network’s pioneering launch of Sling TV in 2015, online TV appeared to be traditional pay-TV’s antidote to subscription streaming video, Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.

But four years later and the online TV, or virtual MVPD market, has cooled. Online TV services added 430,000 combined subs in the second quarter — a 44% decline from 756,000 net subs additions in the previous-year quarter.

The market, which includes Philo, Hulu Live, YouTube TV, Spectrum TV, and Vidgo, among others, appears stuck in neutral as high-profile SVOD services from Disney, Apple, NBC Universal and WarnerMedia are poised to enter the market.

AT&T’s ambitious DirecTV Now service has thousands of subs after it did away with a $34.99 loss-leading price point. The platform is now called AT&T TV Now with about 1.5 million subs.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Sling TV continues to lead the standalone online TV market with 2.47 million subs — up 128,000 subs from 2.34 million subs last year. But that growth has eluded Sony’s branded $49.99 PlayStation Vue service, which languishes as a fiscal underachiever with around 500,000 subs.

According to media reports, Sony has hired Bank of America Merrill Lynch to explore PS Vue sale options, with competitor Fubo TV reportedly interested. Nothing has been announced and sports-themed Fubo and Sony aren’t talking.

When Vue launched, it was the first online TV service offering cloud-based storage and on-demand features. But Sony last year began sounding warnings about Vue, saying the “market and future business model” for the platform remained rocky.

Indeed, when Vue dropped Sinclair Broadcast Group stations last year, Sinclair sent out a press release announcing that it had removed ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC affiliated stations from the platform due to “certain contractual provisions” — downplaying any material effect on its business due to Vue’s “very small subscriber base.”

“We remind Sony subscribers that there are other video distributor options available to receive our broadcast stations’ programming, including Sony’s direct competitor YouTube TV, which continues to carry stations that Sony has dropped,” Sinclair wrote in the release. “Fortunately, subscribers to PlayStation Vue can terminate their subscriptions with ease and without termination fees.”

FuboTV Bows Ad-Supported Sports Network

Online TV platform fubo TV Sept. 9 launched ad-supported “Sports Network,” with content from FanDuel, Stadium, The Players Tribune, USA Today, VSiN and Young Hollywood, among others.

Soft launched in June, fubo Sports Network marks the first time fuboTV has created an ad-supported linear network for distribution off of its platform.

The Sports Network currently has distribution with LG Channels powered by Xumo, Samsung TV Plus, The Roku Channel and fuboTV’s Standard base package.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

“We saw a lack of sports coverage on a free-to-consumer basis,” David Gandler, fuboTV’s co-founder and CEO, said in a statement.

The platform also named Pamela Duckworth, an award-winning executive producer, head of fubo Sports Network and original programming, a newly created position.

Duckworth, founder of Duckworth Entertainment, a marketing production company based in NY and LA, was previously a consultant with fuboTV. Duckworth has been tasked with building fuboTV’s first in-house production team and leading original programming development.

“I truly believe that fuboTV is changing the game from a distribution standpoint and am excited to bring to life our unique vision of original content with fubo Sports Network,” Duckworth said.

The network’s fall slate, which kicks off today, includes:

“Call It a Night” with Julie Stewart-Binks (Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7 p.m. ET/PT) – fubo Sports Network’s flagship news program on sports and sports culture is hosted by popular sports journalist and comedian Julie Stewart-Binks (ESPN, Fox Sports, CBS Sports HQ, SNY). Taped from fubo Sports Network’s studio in Hudson Yards, NYC.

“The Players Lounge” with Cobi Jones and PJ Harrison (Wednesdays at 8 p.m.) — Interviewed by two towering figures of American soccer, top players, their friends and fans talk freely about the hottest sports topics of the day. About the hosts: Soccer Hall-of-Famer Cobi Jones is one of the few soccer players from the MLS to have his number retired. PJ Harrison is a creative director and City of Angels Football Club cofounder.

“The Cooligans” (Tuesdays and Thursdays at 8 p.m.) — Soccer is exciting, but soccer talk is so boring … UNTIL NOW. New York comedians Alexis Guerreros and Christian Polanco bring laughter to the beautiful game. Through the lens of stand-up comedy, The Cooligans deliver hilarious takes on American and world soccer that are refreshing, fun and make fans of any league enjoy the game much more than they ever thought they could.

“Drinks with Binks” (Fridays at 8 p.m.) — Sportscaster Julie Stewart-Binks goes sip-for-sip with athletes and fans in a new vodcast.

“Football Report” (Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6 p.m.) — News about soccer’s biggest stars, teams and leagues.

“fubo News” (Friday at 6 p.m.) — Customized coverage of the world’s top sporting events.

Partner-Produced Sports Shows

FanDuel/TVG: “Hurry Up” and “More Ways to Win”

GolTV: “Tu Futbol” and “Portugol”

“Stadium: Baseball Stories” hosted by Jayson Stark, and more to be announced

The Players Tribune: “The Real Athlete,” “How It Happened,” “For The Record” and more to be announced

USA Today: SportsPulse, What I’m Hearing, For The Win and more to come

VSiN: “VSiN Best Bets”

Young Hollywood: “Rookie On The Rise” and “Beyond The Athlete”

Live Sports

“Liga MX Soccer” (Univision): A weekly Sunday afternoon match from Mexico’s top soccer league is broadcast in English; Available to fuboTV subscribers only.

NCAA Football and NCAA Basketball Division 1 games; Major League Lacrosse (Stadium)

Cycling (IMG): Coverage of major global cycling events including Giro d’Italia, Cycliste de Quebec and shows like In Cycle magazine.

Horse Racing (TVG): Coverage of horse racing events.

Rounding out fubo Sports Network’s lineup is “Double Play Movie Night,” featuring back-to-back sports movies, including documentaries from Gravitas Ventures and others, every Friday night at 8 p.m. ET.

OTT Video’s Growing Secret: Sports Gambling

Over-the-top video is developing a lucrative relationship with legalized sports gambling — thanks to the U.S. Supreme Court striking down a ban on sports gambling a year ago.

Fubo TV and FanDuel Group May 23 announced a partnership that will make FanDuel the exclusive sportsbook, online casino, horse racing and DFS (distributed file system) partner of the live TV streaming service. The companies have also signed a media buy, which makes FanDuel the exclusive advertiser on fuboTV in these categories.

The agreement is FanDuel Group’s first partnership with an online TV service and will expand fuboTV’s sports offering for consumers while integrating betting data on the fubo platform.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

In addition, horse racing networks TVG and TVG2 (and FanDuel affiliates), will also be available to fuboTV subscribers nationwide. TVG will be added to Fubo’s 90+ channels ($54.99/month after seven day free trial), and TVG2 will be available through the Sports Plus add-on package of nearly 25 channels ($8.99/month).

With these channels, fuboTV subs will have access to horse racing industry coverage, in addition to expanded programming on sports betting and fantasy news, including TVG’s sports betting focused pre-game show, “More Ways to Win.”

“We are always looking for ways to add value for consumers and enhance their premium experience with fuboTV,” Min Kim, VP of business development at Fubo, said in a statement. “Gaming and sports are natural complements.”

Indeed, Disney-owned ESPN earlier this month announced it was partnering with Caesars Entertainment to build a branded studio in Las Vegas. The studio will offer sport-betting-related content on ESPN and ESPN+, the newly-launched SVOD service.

“The sports betting landscape has changed, and fans are coming to us for this kind of information more than ever before,” said Mike Morrison, VP of business development at ESPN. “We are poised to expand our coverage in a big way.”

In February, WarnerMedia Entertainment inked a deal with Caesars Entertainment to build a branded Vegas studio for its Bleacher Report (B/R) platform.

Fox Sports on May 8 became the first major media company in the U.S. to acquire a stake in sports gambling after paying $236 million  for a 5% ownership of The Stars Group.

“Digital sports wagering represents a growing market opportunity that allows us to diversify our revenue streams, connect directly with consumers and expand the reach of the Fox Sports brand,” said Eric Shanks, CEO of Fox Sports.

Adam Kaplan, VP of content business & operations at FanDuel, said the company’s data analytics will change how people watch sports on TV.

“We can enhance the live-viewing experience by allowing cord-cutting sports fans to view the content that matters to them the most from their TV, phone, tablet or computer,” Kaplan said.

Regardless of its legality, Disney CEO Bob Iger, speaking on the recent fiscal call, was quick to deflect the family-based media giant’s tacit support for gambling.

“We’ve already done some [gambling-related] things that we would integrate it into our programming, but not to the extent that we would be facilitating gambling as an entity,” Iger said. “In other words, we’ll provide programming that will, I guess, be designed to enlighten people who are betting on sports. But that’s as far as we would go. We just don’t intend to go into the gambling business.”