Walt Disney Co. and cable giant Charter Communications reached a deal that restored Disney channels to the pay-TV service.
The more-than-10-day ESPN and ABC station blackout from Spectrum-pay-TV service proves the demise of traditional TV and cable. Still, some hope comes from the deal reached by Walt Disney Co. and cable giant Charter Communications that restored Disney channels to the pay-TV service.
Charter and Disney have reached a new agreement that necessitates Charter to pay increased fees for the distribution of Disney programming. The cable company gained the ability to provide Disney’s ad-supported streaming apps — including Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+ — along with Spectrum’s television service. Charter will eventually be able to offer the ESPN channel as a streaming add-on when Disney takes that service directly to consumers.
Some analysts had warned that a failure to resolve the dispute would have expedited the unraveling of the traditional pay-TV bundle. Executives from both parties have come to an agreement that maintains the current status quo.
Nineteen Disney channels will be available in Spectrum packages, including Disney-owned ABC stations, such as Los Angeles’ KABC-TV Channel 7, entertainment channel FX, National Geographic, and the Disney Channel, which provides children’s programming. But much of Disney’s kids and young-adult programming will be provided through the ad-supported, basic version of the Disney+ streaming service. The deal acknowledges the rapid shift in TV viewing habits, where consumers now prefer on-demand streaming apps over traditional linear channels.
Even sports fans, who’ve long been the glue holding the cable bundle together, have embraced different ways to watch their favorite teams.
Disney’s entire lineup of ESPN sports channels will continue to be offered in Spectrum packages distributed to 14.8 million American homes, a big win for Disney, which has signaled that ESPN will be a crucial part of its future.
Source: Los Angeles Times