When the first of the streaming services appeared at the dawn of the previous decade, it appeared that they are hinting at a new era in television entertainment that will leave cable television obsolete. Fast forward a decade, and cable TV is still a thing. While streaming TV has grown big time, cable TV has managed to be relevant even today. But, it appears that the biggest blow against cable TV was yet to come, as a hitherto unknown startup is all set to shake the ground below cable TV industry. VIDGO is the new streaming service on the scene, which is effectively a complete replacement for cable TV. Here is what you should know about this service.
Live Cable TV
VIDGO will offer live linear programming of cable TV. In other words, you can enjoy cable TV channels on VIDGO, without actually binding yourself to a cord. Also, you can now pay for only those channels that you enjoy. Frankly speaking, VIDGO is not the first to bring cable entertainment to streaming world. Sling TV and PlayStation Vue have already done that. But, Sling TV brings very limited entertainment options by offering only 20+ channels. As for Vue, although it does offer as many as 90+ channels, it is prohibitively expensive. Its basic package itself costs around $50, which essentially puts it in the same range as cable.
The exact number of channels that will be offered under VIDGO has not yet been clarified by the company behind it. But, they include local channels like ABC, PBS, Fox, NBC, CBS, etc. and national channels like Discovery, Disney-ABC, and so on.
A La Carte Television
VIDGO has hinted that it will allow its subscribers to build their own packages of their favorite channels. However, VIDGO has not clarified how this will be put into action in reality. They could offer bundles of different channels, and allow the subscribers to add or remove these bundles from their package, or provide complete flexibility to them to add or remove individual channels. If the latter is true, then it could mean a monumental shift in the entire television entertainment industry. Gone will be the days when you would have to pay for even the channels you don’t like just because they were bundled with the channels that you want. Complete flexibility of choice.
This feature will be the first of its kind. Neither the cable TV providers, nor any other streaming service offers this level of flexibility to its subscribers. Naturally, people will pick only those channels they like and completely get rid of the ones they don’t watch anyway. Now, they pay for only what they see.
Among VIDGO’s bouquet of offers is the much awaited sports content. The entire list of sports channels available with the service is yet to be revealed, but they include ESPN, NFL Network, and MLB. In fact, VIDGO is the first streaming service that offers NFL and MLB. Thus, you can keep yourself entertained with everything happening in the football and baseball worlds throughout the year.
Inclusion of sports entertainment in their offering is a great move on part of VIDGO, as it puts it firmly in the elite club of streaming services that offer sports, which currently includes only two members other than VIDGO. Sports channels are the last string binding the TV viewers firmly to the cable television. Now, with the entry of VIDGO, sports lovers can finally cut their cord. Already more than a quarter of Millennials have disconnected cable TV service and are completely depending on streaming services for their TV entertainment. This phenomenon will get a huge boost once VIDGO is available across America.
Complete Flexibility – Anywhere, Any Device
VIDGO is offering multi device streaming from the ground up. This means that all packages with the service come with multi device streaming feature. No matter which of VIDGO’s packages you sign up for, you will be able to stream the service on more than one of your devices. Thus, you can enjoy VIDGO on any device of your choice. All you need is an internet connection. This can be a Wi-Fi connection, or a 4G data connection.
Whether you are travelling for work, sitting in a restaurant, hanging out in a park, or just lazing away on your own porch, you can always enjoy all the entertainment that VIDGO has to offer. The convenience of VIDGO is not limited to any place, but also the devices. You can enjoy VIDGO on a host of devices, including smartphones, and smart TVs. Thus, you can lie on your couch and enjoy VIDGO on the big 60-inch TV in your home, or use it on your smartphone while you are travelling. The various platforms that support VIDGO are Roku, Amazon Fire TV Stick, iOS, Android, tablets, smartphones, and smart TVs.
Of course, pricing is one of the major criteria in deciding which video streaming service you wish to subscribe to. Perhaps, that is why people behind VIDGO are taking their own time to come out with the complete pricing structure. However, they have indicated that there will be three packages on offer, and the pricing will fall somewhere between Sling TV and PlayStation Vue’s. With Sling TV’s basic package offered at $20, and Vue’s basic package offered at $50, this provides a wide range of pricing to choose for the company. If the rumors are to be believed, then the basic package of VIDGO will fall somewhere between $20 and $25.
Granted, this is relatively pricey in comparison to other streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Instant Prime Video, which offer certain packages in less than $10 range. But, considering the nature of the services offered by VIDGO, mainly live linear programming, these services are not the right comparison. Indeed, VIDGO is a complete replacement for cable television, and hence it should be compared to that. When you do that, you will see that VIDGO is a huge bargain. It will save you hundreds of dollars over a year. Even the company’s co-founder and president, Robert Kostensky, has claimed that VIDGO will be the lowest cost solution that offers such a big catalog of channels on so many devices. There is no doubt that VIDGO is a winner as far as pricing is concerned.
No Hidden Costs
VIDGO’s team has been very clear about the fact that there will be no hidden fees when it comes to their services. For a fact, you will be paying exactly what you calculated based on your consumption of the service. You won’t have to install a new device in your home; you won’t have to enter a long-term contract with the company; you won’t have to pay any rental for the devices. More importantly, there are no formalities like credit checks. You get what you pay for, and you are charged for nothing else. There are only two components of your payment here. One is the subscription fee, and the other is the payment towards on-demand content. That’s all.
Availability of Service
VIDGO is an OTT streaming service. All it needs is an internet connection. If you have an internet connection, whether it is on your phone, computer, or some other compatible smart device, you will be able to enjoy VIDGO. Unlike cable TV, it is not subjected to frequent technical difficulties. Moreover, wherever you are, as long as you have an internet connection, you will be able to enjoy VIDGO eventually. Initially though, VIDGO is being launched in select few cities like San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami, and so on. So, not everybody will be able to avail the service right away. They will have to wait a bit more.
After the initial launch, the VIDGO plans to make the service available across the country by the end of this year. Whether that will happen in phases across different cities, or there will be a blanket launch across the country is yet to be seen. Either way, VIDGO will have millions of potential cord-cutters residing in other parts of the country in anticipation of the launch of this service in their city.
VIDGO has provided a sneak peek into the interface of their software and it is surprisingly user-friendly for a service that has just been launched. There is a favorites menu for quick access to the most viewed content, so that you can enjoy your favorite channels without having to search for them every time. The icing on the cake is the automatic cloud DVR, which enables you to record all your TV programming so that you never miss your shows. Not to mention the huge on-demand content on offer, which includes even the first-run movies. No wonder the entertainment industry is holding its breath, in anticipation of the arrival of the future of television entertainment.