Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC) is reportedly joining the ranks of cable companies that are testing streaming-only video services.
According to Engadget, which got its hands on some internal TWC documents, the MSO began a beta test today on a new "TWC TV" service in New York City. Targeted to customers who only subscribe to the operator's broadband offering, the streaming video service will support a number of hardware platforms, but will reportedly be optimized for Roku and ship with a Roku 3 device.
Programming options, the report said, include a "Starter" package that delivers about 20 channels for $10 a month. The "Standard" bundle, meanwhile, includes around 70 basic channels -- plus premium networks Showtime and Starz -- for $50 a month.
The report didn't specify which basic channels are included. TWC has yet to respond to FierceCable's inquiry for confirmation and comment.
Engadget reported the service will stream through TWC's own network. That might give TWC an advantage in terms of successful delivery of its content. For example, Dish Network's Sling TV has suffered a number of glitches in streaming popular content during the service's first eight months of availability.
TWC's new streaming service will use TWC's TV Everywhere apps for distribution onto other devices, Engadget reported. TWC's apps currently support platforms including iOS, Android, Xbox One/360, Kindle Fire and Samsung smart TVs.
TWC isn't the only cable company reportedly testing a streaming service. Charter Communications (NASDAQ: CHTR) has begun its own Midwestern trials of a $20-a-month streaming bundle, likely dubbed Spectrum TV Stream, which also ships with a Roku.
Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA), meanwhile, announced Xfinity Stream during the spring, but it has yet to follow through on announced plans to begin testing the service in Boston.
Such streaming services are noteworthy because they typically cost less than traditional, set-top box cable TV offerings. They may also appeal more to millennials and other younger users who are more used to watching video streamed over the Internet to a range of devices beyond TVs.
- read this Engadget story
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