YouTube is launching Major League Baseball in its streaming-TV platform, YouTube TV. YouTube users will be able to watch all the games of the season and it will also serve as “presenting” sponsor of the series for two more years.
Major League Baseball announced that it has extended and deepened its agreement with Alphabet property YouTube. MLB Network’s television channel will be included as part of Alphabet’s YouTube TV cable-television package and the YouTube TV logo and the World Series logo will be appearing side by side through 2019’s championship games.
MLB.TV, the Major League Baseball’s existing streaming service might also get added to YouTube TV subscription for an extra fee giving viewers access to all Major League Baseball games played in any given season.
YouTube TV will have to compete with other players like Netflix, which is the undisputed king of over-the-top-television now, boasting a presence in 75% of the households that subscribe to any streaming service.
Hulu, another streaming platform co-owned by Walt Disney Co., Twenty-First Century Fox Inc and Comcast Corporation, still offers Netflix-like access to programming that’s already been telecasted along with their several originals.
For $40 a month, Hulu Live subscribers can tap into all the major network broadcasts plus the niceties like Cartoon Network, TBS, Lifetime and others.
As robust and recognizable as those products may be, YouTube is still an amazing draw, setting the stage for the growth of Alphabet’s subscription-based cable service YouTube TV. Those consumers may just need a nudge.
At the same time, YouTube promised to bring more NBA and MLB programming to the service.
Still, YouTube TV is a developmental product current and would-be Alphabet stockholders may want to keep in mind as a long-term game-changer. The global pay-TV market is worth more than $200 billion per year, and most of the entrenched legacy players are still doing it rather badly.