AT&T TV NOW might be operating under a new name but it’s the same old subscriber losses story.
AT&T confirmed the service formerly known as DIRECTV NOW service has now dropped down to 1.1 million subscribers.
The confirmation came as part of the company’s third quarter earnings.
Another quarter, another massive subscriber drop
During the company’s earnings release, AT&T confirmed its NOW streaming service lost another 195,000 subscribers. This brings the total down to 1.1 million.
The latest AT&T TV NOW subscriber losses follows on from the previous quarter where the service lost 168,000 subscribers, bringing the total down to 1.3 million at the time.
At the start of the fourth quarter in 2018, AT&T had over 1.8 million subscribers.
The losses are not just a NOW issue either. The company also confirmed it lost more than one million premium TV subscribers in the quarter overall.
The larger loss includes exiting DIRECTV and U-verse customers.
AT&T TV NOW closing in on one million subscribers
Normally, when a streaming service is closing in on the one million subscriber marker, it is a sign of the company’s subscriber growth. In AT&T TV NOW’s case the opposite is true.
A year ago AT&T TV NOW was one of the leading live TV streaming services and appeared to be closing in on two million subscribers. That changed when the company announced its fourth quarter results and confirmed the first significant subscriber drop.
Fast-forward a year and if the fourth quarter continues as 2019 has played out so far, then the live TV streaming service is likely to dip below one million subscribers.
Depending on how many subscribers it loses in the current quarter, the service might end up with almost one million fewer subscribers than it held a year ago.
AT&T continues to be unfazed by the exodus
While subscribers have been fleeing in record numbers, AT&T continues to argue this is a good thing.
Officially, the company credits the current quarter losses as a result of a “focus on long-term value customer base and carriage disputes.”
The former refers to the company’s intentional efforts to drop customers it considers to be of a low-value. These are subscribers who are locked-in to cheaper than advertised plans and packages.
AT&T has continually argued losing these subscribers decreases losses and increases profit. A sentiment the company stated is working as planned.
Once again, AT&T also pointed to HBO Max as the priority going forward. It’s “terrific” new service.