NFL fans who subscribe to DIRECTV NOW may have just gotten a reason to search for a new streaming television providers. Starting this week, DIRECTV NOW will no longer carry the all-football-all-the-time channel. How much of an impact this will have on DIRECT NOW’s subscriber totals remains unknown.
In response to losing the NFL Network, AT&T issued a statement on its website currently which reads “Our rights to provide the NFL Network in your TV lineup have expired. We’re sorry for any inconvenience. The NFL Network and RED ZONE CHANNEL® remain available to all fans on DIRECTV. However, as we continue to manage content costs, we could not reach an agreement with the NFL to continue to carry their channels on U-verse TV and DIRECTV NOW.”
The loss of DIRECTV NOW comes on the heels of major price increases which saw the prices of all of its packages and bundles almost double. Those price increases led to over a quarter of a million DIRECTV NOW subscribers leaving for cheaper over-the-top television options. Did that loss of subscribers contribute to DIRECTV NOW having to drop its rights to the NFL Network?
NFL Network remains a part of both Sling TV base packages, Blue and Orange, which are just $15 and $25 a month, respectively. For NFL fans who absolutely must have NFL Network to keep an eye on all of the action around the league, many of DIRECTV NOW’s competitors are likely suddenly looking much more attractive in light of this recent loss.
Aside from Sling TV, NFL Network is also still available on fuboTV’s basic plan and PlayStation Vue’s “Core” package, both of which start around $50 a month – far less than any DIRECTV NOW package. For cable cutters looking to watch NFL Network without cable, this loss could be a dealbreaker for their DIRECTV NOW subscriptions.