Recap: The Pay TV Show 2018

Attendees gather at the first-ever, sold-out Pay TV Show in Denver. (Jeremiah Batucan)

FierceVideo and FierceCable hosted The Pay TV Show in Denver this week. The event brought together top executives to discuss the innovative technologies, strategies and business models that companies are using to compete in what has become a very disrupted marketplace. Get a full recap of the event from the archived live blog, below. (All article timestamps below are Mountain Time.)

9:59 AM, May 17

vMVPD market shakeout won’t happen in 2018, analysts say

DENVER—With more than a half-dozen virtual pay TV services offering similar skinny bundles of channels and roughly congruent price points, Fierce Editor-in-Chief Mike Dano asked a panel of video industry analysts which vMVPD will be the first to succumb.

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9:04 AM, May 17

WideOpenWest executive shoots straight: ‘5G is something I’m very worried about’

DENVER—Cable executives typically talk around the question when asked about the potential threat of 5G wireless to their broadband businesses. So credit Roger Seiken, WideOpenWest's senior VP of video programming, for coming right out and saying what pretty much everyone in the cable industry is thinking.

9:00 AM, May 17

Philo CEO weighs in on AT&T's nonsports skinny bundle plans

DENVER—Philo CEO Andrew McCollum could soon have a direct competitor in Watch, a nonsports streaming skinny bundle AT&T intends to launch. But he doesn’t seem overly concerned.

8:32 AM, May 17

Sling TV chief says OTA antennas are the cure to retransmission blues

DENVER—Warren Schlichting, group president of Sling TV, presented a simple solution to the problem of rising retransmission fees: Don’t pay them and incorporate free OTA signals instead.

8:16 AM, May 17

The evolving battle to stream live content over the internet

DENVER—Over the past dozen or so years, providers ranging from RealNetworks to Netflix have helped push the streaming video market forward significantly, such that today SVOD providers can stream on-demand HD content to millions of users over the public internet without breaking much of a technological sweat. The same, however, is not true about live content.


Wednesday, May 16

10:54 AM, May 16

Hulu’s Connolly: High customer acquisition costs ‘nuke’ traditional pay TV operators in carriage talks 

DENVER—Virtual pay TV services have an advantage in program licensing negotiations due to their far lower customer acquisition costs, said Tim Connolly, senior VP and head of distribution and partnerships for Hulu.

9:57 AM, May 16

vMVPD opportunity narrower than people think, TDG’s Espelien says

DENVER—Virtual MVPDs like Sling TV and DirecTV Now are helping to offset declines in the traditional TV space, but the opportunities with streaming TV are narrower than many expect.

8:07 AM, May 16

Addressable advertising is growing, but it might not take over everything

DENVER—Players in the pay TV industry expect to see dramatic growth in the market for addressable advertising, but the technology might not take over every single advertisement and broadcast in the space.

6:45 AM, May 16

SES says Hotwire out of trials, now the largest commercial application of managed 4K service in North America

DENVER—European satellite distribution company SES said it has secured the largest commercial deployment yet for its turnkey Ultra HD service, with Ft. Lauderdale, Florida-based operator Hotwire advancing from the trial phase of the service.


Tuesday, May 15

3:20 PM, May 15

Binder: T-Mobile video service to launch ‘this year,’ will be very, very disruptive

Denver—Just as his boss did in December, when he announced T-Mobile's acquisition of Layer3, Jeff Binder used a fireside chat at The Pay TV Show in Denver to promise disruption. But questions remain about what the platform will look like.

2:30 PM, May 15

Amazon open to integrating Prime Video on pay-TV platforms

Denver—Richard Au, Amazon's director of Prime Video Channels and Sports in the U.S., said his company would be open to integrating its Prime Video service on pay-TV platforms. He added that Amazon is not trying to replace traditional TV.

10:50 AM, May 15

Charter: WorldBox 2.0 is already deployed, and it’s ‘going great’

DENVER—Despite a published report last week that his company’s WorldBox 2.0 is still a few months away, Gary Schanman, senior VP of video products for Charter Communications, said the second-generation set-top is already being deployed in the market.

9:30 AM, May 15

Cord nevers don't know what they're missing, and pay TV needs to show them, says Parks' Sappington

DENVER—Brett Sappington, senior director of research at Parks Associates, kicked off the first annual Pay TV Show with a session detailing some of the emerging challenges and opportunities for the pay TV space.