SAN FRANCISCO: YouTube, the Google-owned video site, has announced that it is launching a live and on-demand streaming TV service that offers an alternative to traditional cable TV packages.
Priced at $35 a month, YouTube TV will offer content from channels ABC, CBS, Fox, ESPN, regional sports networks and dozens of popular cable networks, and the service also comes with a "cloud DVR" that allows users to record and store programming.
Christian Oestlien, YouTube's Director of Product Management, outlined details about the new service in a blog post in which he explained that every YouTube TV membership comes with six accounts and personal DVR with no storage limits.
"Consumers have made it clear that they want live TV without all the hassle. They don't want to worry about their DVR filling up," he wrote, adding that YouTube TV is designed for "those who want to watch what they want, when they want, how they want, without commitments".
YouTube's new TV service will be available only in the US and the Financial Times reported that it is likely to compete with the likes of AT&T's DirecTV Now and Sling TV and may challenge streaming services, such as Netlflix and Hulu, for some customers.
The company believes that the popularity of TV clips from some shows, such as James Corden's Carpool Karaoke, showed that younger viewers still like watching programmes made for TV.
"There's no question that millennials love great TV content," said Susan Wojcicki, Chief Executive of YouTube. "But what we've seen is they don't want to watch it in the traditional setting," she added.
"They want it live or on demand, when they want, on any screen, where they want and on their own terms."
Data sourced from YouTube, Financial Times; additional content by Warc staff