Recently, Bloomberg reported that DISH Network Corp. (DISH - Analyst Report) has decided to launch Internet TV service in late summer (possibly Aug/Sep) this year. If successful in the endeavor, DISH will be the first Internet TV provider in the U.S. Last year, Intel failed in its attempt to launch similar products. DISH will offer a full package of live-streaming TV channels to its customers.
Technically, Internet TV is similar to cable TV offerings. The lone difference being that cable TV can be watched only on television sets, while Internet TV shows can be viewed using tablets and smartphones. We believe that the growing deployment of super fast 4G LTE wireless technology and significant adoption of portable mobile devices are the primary reasons behind the popularity of Internet TV.
Bloomberg also reported that major TV networks, such as, ABC, CBS, FOX and NBCU are in talks with DISH about meeting several conditions before streaming their TV shows. Through its existing DishWorld network, the company is already offering live streaming of a series of international TV channels over the web. DISH currently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
Last month, DISH achieved a significant milestone by signing an online pay-TV deal with the leading media mogul The Walt Disney Co. (DIS - Analyst Report). The agreement allows DISH’s customers to watch live shows of several Disney channels on devices like PCs, smartphones and tablets, thereby bypassing the need for a set-top box. Moreover, Walt Disney dropped its earlier objection against DISH’s ad skipping Auto Hop device.
Internet TV is gradually gaining popularity in the U.S. In Jan 2014, Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ - Analyst Report) purchased the unsuccessful Internet TV platform of Intel and is currently negotiating with several content providers to live stream their shows.
AT&T Inc. (T - Analyst Report) recently entered into a partnership with Chernin Group to offer Internet TV services by the end of this year. The company will invest over $500 million in this venture.
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