The bundle hits streaming
The Future. As the streaming industry matures, every service seems to be bundling any way it can to keep subscriber counts growing. Ultimately, each company is trying to find a way to give customers the most bang for their buck (while also keeping an eye on ARPU) and stand out from the pack. That’s because, other than giving people great content, the best way to attract and keep subscribers may be by offering a range of services they feel they can’t live without.
According to THR, the streaming ecosystem is about to look a lot like cable TV.
- Paramount Global bundled its Paramount+ service with Walmart’s Prime-like program, Walmart+. And then, two weeks later, Showtime surprisingly became a tile within Paramount+.
- Disney has ascended to subscriber count glory by bundling Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+, offering promotional bundles if bought through Verizon or Uber’s Uber One loyalty program.
- HBO Max was bundled with AT&T when the telecom giant owned it. Now under Discovery, it will eventually be bundled with Discovery+.
- Apple bundles Apple TV+ within its larger services program, Apple One, which includes music, movies, games, and other software features.
Additionally, Amazon, Roku, and (maybe soon) YouTube offer channel stores, which essentially create in-platform pay channels for different streamers. Is it feeling like the second coming of DirecTV yet?
Everything Everywhere All at Once
Of course, everyone’s goal is to become Amazon Prime, which bundles Prime Video with every other service that the e-commerce giant offers at one low price. It’s an all-consuming flywheel of consumer consumption that users never seem to cancel.
Disney may be trying to create its own version, with the added benefit of theme park admissions. And Netflix is slowly building its own entertainment ecosystem thanks to new pushes into gaming, live streaming, live events, and retail.
It looks like the only path to growth is scaling beyond film and TV.