TV & Video Week in Review

Report Type: 
Week In Review

Yankees RSN goes DTC

The YES network which airs Yankees and Nets games can finally be streamed without a pay TV subscription. It’ll cost a steep $20/month or $200 annually to sign up before April 30th to watch games using the YES app, and a whopping $25/month or $240 annually after that. The YES app is available on Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Google TV, Apple TV and Samsung-connected TV devices. For the second straight season, Amazon Prime Video announced they will be the exclusive distributor of 20 Yankees games at no additional cost to Prime members who reside in the NY regional area. Moreover, streamers such as Apple recently announced requiring a subscription to watch Friday Night Baseball whereas last year some of the games were available for free.

The NPD Take

  • Coming off Aaron Judge’s historic record-breaking season, YES is in a position to benefit from their DTC offering, especially since Prime only offers a fraction of the 162 Yankees games played and fans can’t watch them anywhere else. For diehard Yankees fans, it could mean ditching cable altogether.
  • With many sports subscriptions needed to watch all of MLB, Yankees fans may churn in and out depending on how well the team performs. And once the season ends, it will be difficult to justify the high cost in the off-season especially given the current economic climate, hence the push by YES for early, annual subscriptions.

Vizio expands content 

Vizio expanded its partnership with AMC Networks, bringing additional content to its FAST service WatchFree+. This deal brings five more FAST channels including Portlandia, MSG Sports Zone, Allblk Gems and Overtime, as well as more than 150 on-demand movies. Watchfree+ offers more than 260 channels including All Reality We tv, AMC Thrillers, IFC Films Picks and The Walking Dead Universe and over 6,000 movies and shows. For convenience, users will be able to subscribe to AMC+ using their Vizio account, with a feature to manage subscriptions and redeem offers in one place.

The NPD Take:

  • As many streamers continue to raise subscription costs, viewers are looking for free and cheaper options. FAST platforms offer this and integrating them with subscriptions makes viewing easier.
  • With free streaming saturating the market, strong content and differentiation will be key.