DirecTV: Premium VoD keeps subs happy

According to DirecTV CEO Mike White, early-release films that cost $29.99 and become available 60 days after the start of their theatrical run are another way for DirecTV to keep subscribers happy at a time of growing demand for anytime/anywhere access to content. Addressing DirecTV’s annual shareholder meeting, White described the launch last week as a way to trial the offer this summer.

White asserted that DirecTV’s mission statement was to make the company’s service the best video experience anywhere, anytime people want it. “We plan to stay true to that commitment by offering consumers an even better experience this year and beyond,” he said, stressing that keeping subscribers in the mature US market loyal was key to success, and that making more movies and TV shows available via broadband was one element of that.

Derek Chang, executive VP, content strategy and development, said that in an age where there are a lot of different options available for customers, DirecTV needed to continue to make itself a primary option for customers. “That entails the content we put on, the availability of the product wherever customers are,” he added.

Chang predicted that the consumers who took up the offer would like it. “It’s added value to customers,” he said. “It’s a premium product for a premium set of customers and is for us just continuing to always improve our products for our customers.”

He admitted that there was “no timetable” for the possible launch of a Netflix-type subscription service for streaming video that DirecTV is currently surveying consumers about. “We are trying to prepare ourselves for the future,” he said, noting that there are different distribution technologies and methods that didn’t exist years ago. “We are in an evaluation process right now.”

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