Happy Friday Cord Cutters!
This week we're talking about the huge subscriber numbers Disney+ reported this week and whether they'll be able to keep cord cutters interested until The Mandalorian returns.
Also: Q&A on repack-related pixelation, short cuts, must-see OTA TV, and more.
As always, if you know of someone who might need some insight or help with cutting the cord on cable or satellite, please forward our newsletter, or use the handy share buttons at the top of this email.
OK... now let's get to it!
NEWS: Disney+ Launch Has 'Exceeded Expectations'
During their quarterly results call this week, Disney reported that their new streaming service has been a hit. As of this week, 28.6 million have subscribed to watch Baby Yoda get punched by a storm trooper.
Its popularity is also helping to boost subscriber numbers for Disney's other streaming properties Hulu and ESPN, putting pressure on competitors.
However, aside from superfans who committed to a 3-year subscription out of the gate, Disney has reasons to be concerned about customer retention.
As analysts like Dan Rayburn have pointed out, 20% of those subscribers are getting Disney+ for a year at no cost via a partnership with Verizon.
Q&A: Are My Signal Problems Because of ATSC 3.0?
Send us your most pressing cord cutting questions via email so we can answer them in an upcoming issue.
Today's question comes from Cynthia who asks, "Ever since we had to rescan because of the channel repack, two of my channels are pixelating. My antenna installer says it could be that my TV can't receive ATSC 3.0 signals... Is that really why I'm having trouble?"
While it can be difficult to diagnose why previously clear Over-the-Air TV channels suddenly become pixelated without further investigation, we can unequivocally say this has nothing to do with the eventual transition to ATSC 3.0.
Yes, it is true that your TV and other devices with tuners like Tablo aren't designed to pick up next-generation TV signals. But since they can't, you wouldn't just get pixelation, you'd get no signal at all.
Given the timing of this change in video quality that Cynthia is seeing, what's much more likely is that these stations are temporarily broadcasting at a lower power.
Bad weather and wait times for tower climbing crews and parts have delayed the completion of channel repack work in several areas. Over the next few months, most affected stations should return to full power broadcasts which should fix these reception issues.
In the meantime, Cynthia can try adding an amplifier to her setup or removing any splitters which can reduce the overall signal strength coming from the TV antenna.
Have a question about cord cutting that you'd like answered? Send us a note and you may see your question in an upcoming issue of Cord Cutting This Week!
SHORT CUTS: Netflix Now Allows You to Disable Auto Play, & More
Most weeks there's more news than we can cram into this email. Thankfully 'short cuts' delivers the cord-cutting news and deals we didn't have room for, including:
WHAT'S ON: Must-See OTA TV
As always, there's lots great TV coming to you FREE with an antenna this week including:
- Check out the special ABC News: The Democratic Debate live from New Hampshire - February 7th @ 8:00 p.m. ET on ABC
- Or catch the season 4 premiere of MacGyver - February 7th @ 8:00 p.m. ET on CBS/Global
- RuPaul hosts and Justin Bieber performs on Saturday Night Live - February 8th @ 11:30 p.m. ET on NBC/Global
- Tune in live to The Oscars - February 9th at 8:00 p.m. ET on ABC/CTV
- Enjoy the premiere of the new 50 Cent-produced legal drama For Life - February 11th @ 10:00 p.m. ET on ABC/CTV
- The 40th season of Survivor premieres - February 12th @ 8:00 p.m. ET on CBS/Global
Don't forget to regularly check the TV SHOWS > PREMIERING on your Tablo app to find and set new and old favorites to record!
CANADIAN CORNER: 2.6 Million Canadians Stream Crave
Bell's streaming service Crave is doing well. The company recently reported its 2.6 million subscribers helped to set streaming records on the service for the premiere of Star Trek: Picard.
This is despite shedding 100,000 subscribers since last August, likely due to the end of Game of Thrones.
Perhaps they'll be able to make up some of those losses however with the new french language package which includes more than a thousand hours of programming for an additional $10/month.
We hope you enjoyed this edition of Cord Cutting This Week!
If you know someone who may be interested in cutting the cord on cable or satellite, please feel free to forward this newsletter to them or use the handy share buttons at the top of this email. Make sure to ask them to sign up as well!
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The Tablo Team
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