The telecommunications and media company BCE Inc. originally Bell Canada Enterprises Inc. is trying their hand on an app-based live TV streaming service for people without cable subscriptions. These so-called cord-cutters are starting to grow in numbers as the shift of viewing habits from traditional cable subscriptions to new online streaming is starting to increase.
A lot of Canadians still have traditional cable subscriptions, satellite or even Internet-protocol television (IPTV) subscriptions. However, the amount of traditional cable TV subscribers is steadily declining. The numbers dropped to 11.2 million households with a TV subscription (2015) from 11.5 million (2012) according to the federal broadcast subscription.
BCE Inc. is trying to counter to the new online trend that is slowly killing traditional cable using a cheaper service that focuses apps to deliver the streaming service.
Last Monday, Bell Canada has launched a new live TV streaming service called Alt TV. The company teased the launch last month and is now sharing the details of their new service.
The service allows audiences to watch Bell Canada’s channels using the Bell Fibe TV app that are on their laptops, smartphones, tablets or other mobile devices. It only requires an Internet connection. It doesn’t require a cable box or an actual television with a subscription. This basically means that this lets the people watch regular TV programming on their mobile devices, home desktops and even streaming devices like Apple TV. Customers can watch the Alt TV service on actual television that is connected to a fourth-generation Apple TV device.
This fuses the new trend of online streaming with traditional cable programming therefore giving birth to a new kind of service primarily aimed at cord-cutters.
“There are folks – I would say, primarily singles and couples living in condos – they may not have a traditional television service, but they still enjoy good programming. This product is really aimed at them,” Wade Oosterman, group president of Bell Canada said in an interview.
People who already subscribed to Bell’s Fibe high-speed home internet service are the only ones who have access to this service. This service that has no contract will start at $14.95 per month and will include 30 channels with some add-ons available. However, this is only available to customers living in Ontario and Quebec who has unlimited Internet packages having speeds of at least 25mbps.
This service provided by BCE Inc. is available now to a select few on Bell Fibe internet customers in Ontario and Quebec, Canada. The company says. The service will also be reaching Manitoba and Atlantic Canada.
A similar product was also recently introduced by Telus Corp. This is priced at $20 per month for internet customers in Alberta and British Columbia.
Alt TV won’t have the ability to record, restart or even pause live shows. Customers are only also able to stream the programming on only two devices at once. The picture quality also won’t be better compared to Bell’s regular Fibe TV service.