Google’s announcement of a price increase for its YouTube TV subscription has sparked concerns among users, who are now bracing themselves for higher monthly bills. The service, which offers access to live TV and cable channels over an internet connection, has become a popular option for cord-cutters looking to ditch traditional cable packages.
The price hike from $65 to $73 per month, set to take effect in April, comes as the cost of content continues to rise. Google acknowledged this in an email to subscribers, stating that it needed to update its pricing to keep delivering high-quality service. This explanation may not satisfy all users, however, especially those who may already be feeling the pinch from the economic fallout of the pandemic.
The move by Google follows similar price hikes by other online streaming services, including Disney, Apple, and HBO. These providers have also cited rising content costs as a factor in their decision to raise fees.
Despite the higher cost, YouTube TV is still an attractive option for many consumers. The service offers more than 85 channels, including live sports, news, and entertainment programming, and allows subscribers to watch on multiple devices simultaneously. In December, YouTube TV secured the rights to the NFL’s “Sunday Ticket” package, giving it exclusive access to out-of-market NFL games that aren’t aired on local TV.
The package reportedly cost Google around $2 billion per year, with other major players like Apple and Disney also in the running. While Google hasn’t revealed pricing for its “Sunday Ticket” bundle, the package previously cost $80 per month when it was owned by DirecTV.
To offset the price increase, Google is lowering the cost of an add-on that provides access to higher-resolution 4K streams from $20 per month to $10 per month, according to the email sent to subscribers. This may offer some relief to users who value the enhanced visual quality of 4K content.
the price hike by Google has been met with mixed reactions, with some users expressing frustration over yet another increase in the cost of streaming services. Others, however, recognize that rising content costs and ongoing investments in service quality make it necessary for companies like Google to adjust their pricing. Time will tell how subscribers ultimately respond to the change.