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By the End of 2018 Most Locals Will Be Streaming on DIRECTV NOW, Hulu, & More


As 2017 draws to an end, we are starting to see the floodgates of local affiliates joining live TV streaming but this is just a trickle of what is likely to come.

Recently Cord Cutters News has talked with people on both broadcast and streaming sides about the future of broadcast TV and streaming.

According to multiple sources the decision for broadcast affiliates to join live TV streaming services has been made. Now the holdup is a combination of contracts and, more important, technical issues that need to be overcome.

This lines up well with recent news from Sinclair and Nexstar, two of the largest affiliate owners that recently announced deals with several live TV streaming services.

“Nexstar now has reached mutually satisfactory agreements with three of the big four networks for participation in OTT services,” said CEO Perry Sook in a statement.

Sook did not stop there and went on to stay “We are of a mind that we will have agreements with all the networks by year-end and all of the participating OTT services by year-end, and we’ll see what it ultimately amounts to,” Sook said.

Now this does not mean all locals will be live by the end of 2018, but according to people close to the situation, most will. At least when talking about ABC, CBS, FOX, and NBC.

Contractional obligations are some of the biggest holdups. Not only do affiliate owners need a deal with services such as DIRECTV NOW, Hulu, PlayStation Vue, and others, they also need to strike a new deal with the parent company for each network. For example, Nexstar said a handful of NBC affiliate deals are not set to be renewed until sometime in 2018. These agreements will need to be renewed before the affiliates will be added.

There are also technical and manpower hurdles that need to be overcome because it is no minor task to add a live stream of a local affiliate.

So if access to your locals live streamed was holding you back the good news is they are coming. The bad news is that you may need to wait a year before you will have access on one of the many live TV streaming services.

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  • Spencer Karter

    It’s about time! I can’t wait for Charleston, SC locals to come on DIRECTV NOW and YouTubeTV in 2018. In my home DMA of Greenville, SC/Asheville, NC WLOS 13 (ABC) already on DTVN, recently added on YouTube TV, plus rival WYFF 4 (NBC) is now on DTVN, soon WSPA 7 (CBS) be added. I know WHNS 21 (FOX aka Fox Carolina) is already on HULU and YouTubeTV.

  • Daniel Darnell

    I’m looking forward to this, so far in my market none of the services offer any locals except for Hulu and even they only carry my local FOX station. CBS All Access isn’t even live in my market yet! Tri-Cities, TN/VA really needs to get on the ball with locals and all these services! We have basically nothing now.

    • Spencer Karter

      ABC moved from WKPT 19 to subchannel of CBS station WJHL last year. I know it was controversial, similar to CBS moving from low-power WILM 10 (becoming indie) to high-powered subchannel of ABC station WWAY in Wilmington, NC DMA.

  • grinlap

    Do you think the locals will be providing their own app for the various streaming devices in addition to being available on some of the streaming services? In other words, if I don’t want to subscribe to Sling, PS Vue, etc will there be an Roku app for my local station provided by my local station?

    • TaiPeng

      Nope. You will of course be able to use Fox Now is your local Fox station streaming is not working with your provider due to glitching. Every local station is not going to make an app. Only the MDAs such as Chicago do that.

  • TaiPeng

    It only took them 5 years to do it.

    • Mike Thaler

      YTTV didn’t start til 4/17.

  • Slave_to-the_man

    It’s why I’m using YouTubeTV… They rolled out in markets where they had all affiliates already lined up. Much more convenient. And they have a guide n dvr for $35… no complaints.