June 4, 2023

Brighton Journal

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YouTube TV determines NFL Sunday ticket pricing

  • The YouTube “Sunday Ticket” package will cost $349 for YouTube TV subscribers or $449 for non-subscribers.
  • The streamer is offering $100 off all of its plans to anyone who signs up before June 6th.
  • YouTube TV became the owner of “Sunday Ticket” in December, paid nearly $2 billion for the rights, and acquired DirecTV’s long-term contract.

Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelsey (87) runs the ball in for a touchdown against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first quarter at Raymond James Stadium, October 2, 2022.

Kim Clement | USA Today Sports | Reuters

Ready for some ‘Sunday Ticket’ football – with or without a pay-TV subscription?

For the first time this season, the NFL Bundle of Off-Market Games will be offered as part of Google’s YouTube TV, a suite of online and TV channels, as well as for those who don’t want to subscribe to a package of any kind, albeit in installments.

For those who already subscribe to YouTube TV, which costs $72.99 a month, the basic “Sunday Ticket” package will cost an additional $349 for the season. The streamer is also offering a bundle with Redzone, the NFL’s linear cable TV channel, which will cost $389 for the season.

And while you can bypass a YouTube TV subscription and still get the “Sunday Ticket” problem, it does come at a cost. Offered through YouTube Primetime channels, which let you subscribe to individual streaming services and channels in addition to watching movies, the Basic plan will cost $449 and the Redzone package will cost $489.

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All of the above packages come with a $100 discount to anyone who signs up before June 6th.

“We have a really large audience of millions of sports and NFL fans that come to YouTube every day, and now this is accessible,” Christian Ostlin, Vice President of Product Management, YouTube TV, said in an interview. “One of the things we’ve been trying to do here is simplify the user experience with the flexibility and choice that we can offer.”

YouTube TV became the latest home to the “Sunday Ticket” package in December, in a deal that will see the tech giant shell out nearly $2 billion annually for the rights, CNBC previously reported.

Until that deal, which kicks off with the upcoming NFL season, DirecTV was the exclusive home of “Sunday Ticket” and required a subscription to the pay-TV service to watch the games.

The new pricing is in line with DirecTV’s offering, which Oestlien said YouTube has built on as a current market precedent. The operator has also talked to existing subscribers about what they’re willing to pay, he said.

“We didn’t want to give this away for free or anything. There was a real opportunity to price this in a smart way, and we worked closely with the NFL,” Oestlien said.

DirecTV has owned the rights to “Sunday Ticket” since its inception in 1994, and It pays $1.5 billion annually for them since their last renewal in 2014. The package costs $79.99 per month for the basic option, or $149.99 per month for additional features, plus a DirecTV subscription.

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Oestlien said YouTube and the NFL are still doing research together about what other new packages they could offer down the road. He added that there has been a focus on mid-season and late-season packages as potential opportunities, although the parties have nothing to announce at the moment.

Retaining the rights to “Sunday Ticket” would boost YouTube’s profile in the competitive streaming landscape, especially among Internet TV packages once thought to be the answer to traditional cord-cutting. YouTube TV, like other competitors including Hulu Live TV+ and Fubo TV, has been slow to fill the gap for those fleeing traditional pay-TV subscriptions, and increasingly turning to the likes of premium entertainment programming like Netflix. YouTube TV It reached 5 million subscribers in July.

And the deal could be seen as a win for traditional network TV channels, too: The cheaper rates available to subscribers of YouTube TV — which includes broadcast and cable TV that recently renewed its rights deals to NFL games — could entice football fans to do so. You can subscribe to the entire package and keep eyeballs on other networks, which have seen a drop in viewership due to cord cuts.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said at the time of the YouTube TV deal announcement that the league was “focused on increasing digital distribution of our games”.

“This partnership is another example of us looking to the future and building the next generation of NFL fans,” Goodell said in December.

Oestlien said the deal “opens up a whole new market for people who were less interested in getting a ‘Sunday Ticket’ than traditional pay TV.”

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The NFL recently said it has teamed up with RedBird Capital Partners for Form a partnership which owns the exclusive rights to distribute the “Sunday Ticket” to bars, restaurants and other commercial venues in the United States

Amazon holds the exclusive rights to “Friday Night Football,” which requires a Prime Video subscription to watch the games at home. However, DirecTV does broadcast the games to bars, restaurants, and other businesses.

– CNBC’s Alex Sherman contributed to this article.

Disclosure: Comcast, which owns CNBC’s parent company NBCUniversal, is a co-owner of Hulu.