PlayStation Vue better settle in for a long June at the negotiating table, as the virtual MVPD has renewals coming up this month for AMC, Discovery, NBCUniversal and Turner.
The company issued a statement giving its subscribers a heads up about the renewals, and warning them that the negotiations could potentially lead to changes in channel lineups.
“Most of the programming/content you watch on PlayStation Vue is licensed from programmers for the right to air their networks/channels. Once these agreements near expiration, we enter into renewal discussions where we work hard to try and obtain the best value for our customers. Though infrequent, sometimes certain licenses will not be renewed, in which case PlayStation Vue would no longer carry the affected channels or networks,” PlayStation wrote.
The service said it would periodically update the section to list channels and networks coming up for renewal, and noted that the dates listed below are subject to change. In addition to the programmers up for renewal in June, PlayStation Vue has a deal with the NFL Network expiring in July.
The statement from PlayStation Vue is most likely just a courtesy to its subscribers. But, it could also be a harbinger of either channels being removed from the service soon or price increases for subscribers.
If PlayStation Vue does end up raising its rates, it certainly wouldn’t be the first vMVPD to do so this year. In 2019 alone, YouTube TV increased prices to $50 per month, fuboTV increased prices to $55 per month, Hulu increased prices to $45 per month, and DirecTV Now rolled out two new packages starting at $50 per month and topping out at $70.
Dwayne Benefield, vice president and general manager of PlayStation Vue, said in April at the Pay TV Show that PlayStation Vue is still focusing on sports and broadcasting, but he stressed that having choice and flexibility is key, and that’s why PlayStation Vue lets consumers buy channels a la carte.