YouTube recently released its new Internet-based live TV app for $39.99 per month that allows viewers to watch network TV live on their laptop, mobile device, Smart TV or streaming device. The app includes more than 50 channels, including ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, network news such as CNN, Fox News and HLN, sports networks, and other networks, including FX, FXM, USA and TNT. All of these can be watched live. And users can simply enter their zip code to gain access to live local programming from their local network affiliate stations.
Similar to DVR, live shows can be recorded, or users can schedule future recordings. Users can also choose their favorite shows to record automatically. Pre-recorded shows offer users the option to fast forward through commercials. Through the use of a cloud, users can record as many shows as they want simultaneously with unlimited storage without having to use their own data. Like other streaming apps, such as Amazon Prime or Hulu, YouTube TV members can watch original YouTube Red series/movies and also pay additional fees to subscribe to movie channels like HBO or Showtime. There is also a library of movies and shows that can be watched through the app without needing to pre-record. Although they do contain non-skippable ads.
What It Means for Advertisers
The new YouTube streaming app is seen by many as Google’s attempt to tap into the billion-dollar TV advertising industry and capture younger audiences by offering an inexpensive alternative to cable. While terrestrial TV advertising becomes more and more obsolete in reaching younger audiences, the YouTube brand already has a massive millennial following. If they can effectively bring the younger “cord cutting” audience members over to YouTube TV, they will be able to offer TV advertisers a unique opportunity.
I recently started subscribing to YouTube TV. I may be a considered a millennial only in name, being born in 1983, but I would say it’s the best alternative to cable I’ve found so far. I’m my opinion, YouTube is definitely on to something here. Their new app may very well be the future for web-based TV and in-content video advertising.