As is usual with any new service launch, the company behind it always have some internal goals, be it revenue, profits or subscribers. In the case of AT&T and DIRECTV, the company has revealed that they hit their December goal for new subscribers on DIRECTV NOW's launch day, something that came as a pretty big surprise to the carrier.
AT&T's CEO Randall Stephenson has called the early demand for the service "rather dramatic," yet something the company is sure to be pleased about considering their significant investments into on-demand content. DIRECTV alone cost the carrier a total of $48.5 billion last year, while, more recently, they have agreed on a deal to acquire Time Warner for a whopping $85.4 billion, showing consumers that the company is very serious about online content. Now, the rapid success of DIRECTV NOW since its launch is perhaps not surprising considering AT&T has priced the service at just $35 per month for 100 channels which can be streamed to any mobile device or set-top box. On top of this, the company offers a series of add-ons such as HBO or Cinemax which cost an extra $5 per month, which appear to be meeting the companies adoption expectations. Aside from the pricing of the service, though, the CEO hinted at incoming upgrades to the AT&T network, specifically 5G. Now, this upgrade is still some way off, but the CEO appeared to hint that, as demand grows for services such as DIRECTV NOW, the need for faster networks will also grow, something that could eventually lead to faster network upgrades.
Moving away from DIRECTV NOW service, the CEO also mentioned the incoming presidency of Donald Trump and mentioned that the possible lowering of corporate tax could not only benefit the companies but the customers and the economy as a whole, due to the savings that the lower rates could mean for all customers. As well as this, he also mentioned the fact that net-neutrality rules could be relaxed, allowing for increased benefits for customers and carriers.
Under current net-neutrality rules, AT&T is facing an investigation as to whether the pricing of DIRECTV NOW is unfair for the competition but with Donald Trump set to take office in January, the company may see the investigation called off, allowing them to continue pricing the service as they currently do. It remains to be seen what outcome the new presidency will have on services like DIRECTV NOW, but, at least for now, it's fair to say that things are looking pretty bright, at least according to AT&T's CEO.