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Viacom, Scripps, AMC, A+E, & Discovery Are Launching a New Streaming Service


Today Viacom, Scrips, AMC, A+E, and Discovery announced a new sports free streaming service. Subscribers to this new service will get access to 35 networks for $16 a month. The service will be called, Philo.

Channels on the new service include A&E, AMC, Animal Planet, AXS TV, BBC America, Cheddar, Comedy Central, Discovery Channel, Food Network, GSN, HGTV, HISTORY, Investigation Discovery (ID), IFC, Lifetime, MTV, Nickelodeon, TLC, Travel Channel.

For an extra $4 more channels can be added to the service. These channels include MTV Live, Nicktoons, Cooking Channel, AHC, Destination America, Family Channel, Life, and Lego. New subscribers will also get a 7 day free trial.

Philo is missing many popular channels including channels from Disney, NBCUniversal, and Fox. This means no FX, Disney Channel, FreeForm, Hallmark, and more are all missing from Philo.

The service includes an unlimited 30-day DVR, plus on-demand programming. You will be able to pause live programming and watch programs from the beginning if they’ve aired within the last three days. You will also be able to watch on up to three devices at the same time.

According to Discovery and Viacom this service is launching because that their channels drew viewers in greater proportion than the share of distribution revenue they generate.

At launch, this new service will support web browser, Roku devices, an iOS app, and Android via Chrome.

It will be interesting to see how this new service does without any news channels or sports channels.

Source: B&C

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  • Craig W

    Sounds a bit pricey. Drop the Viacom channels and the price.

    • Unique_Username99

      $16 is pricey? And no Viacom is not gettign dropped they are the ones behind this. You’re free to pay $40 a month for OTT services that don’t include Viacom.

      • Craig W

        I have sling blue which has ALL the above channels and a ton more all except for the Discovery Networks so basically I’d be paying $16 to get Discovery. I’ll pass, IMO if Sling dropped Viacom and added Discovery Networks you’d have the absolute best OTT service.
        ESPN and Viacom executives think they have a product that people need to the point of price gouging but as they’re both finding out the consumer is telling them “KEEP IT ! ”
        Sling has the right idea keeping their prices down by not forcing subscribers to pay for locals that many can receive OTA.

        • Unique_Username99

          Or one could get Sling orange and add this.

          • Craig W

            Check the packages the only thing that Sling doesn’t offer are the Discovery Networks. Believe it or not there are people who watch both Sports and Educational channels. I’ll keep what I have and until something better comes along. Right now Philo is not the answer. Period.
            If you need locals and can’t get them OTA there are other options out there. ,Vue, Hulu, You Tube. Check them out.

          • Unique_Username99

            Youtube lack of Roku support also poor channel selection. Vue has 3 of 4 locals also missing some networks( Viacom etc ). Hulu also poor channel section has 2 locals, sort of. One is a SD CBS local instead of the proper HD local out of Nashville all the other OTT services provide. Direct TV Now has best channel selection but only 1 local.

        • Unique_Username99

          many of us CAN’T get locals in via OTA. Also I can’t stand Sling’s pricing approach since it forces you to buy multiple bundles and ends up being MUCH more expensive then the others and STILL lacks may channels.

          • CordCutting2017

            Locals are usually not that big of an issue if you use a supporting service like Hulu for the programming. Mind you Hulu is lagging in newer programming and slow to update current seasons depending on your viewing habits. If you want locals for news then there are some options like CBS all access, viewing your locals on the web, Reuter’s, news.google.com, and other avenues.

        • Carl Collie

          Then why not go with Playstation Vue, no Viacom, plus Discovery, and a DVR, though they do have locals. Though I do not know how you watch them OTA without a dvr, unless you have a Tablo whihc is another $200 expense, plus the guide cost.

    • Soyntgo4it

      what that’s cheap has the channels my VUE subscription doesn’t

  • charles perry

    the concept is sound but there are 2 major caviats: Cell phone requirement locks out most older viewers and not being on Amazon Fire is a negative. Change this and maybe I’ll consider it!!

    • Soyntgo4it

      Aww that’s why I got a Roku.

      • charles perry

        I do have a Roku but I prefer Amazon Fire! I know I’m not alone on this as well as not having a cell phone!

        • Unique_Username99

          Most people have cell phones. That’s just the reality.

          • charles perry

            Well, some of us either don’t need it or can’t afford it!! I fall into both cattagorys!!

          • Unique_Username99

            Where are you getting this cell phone requirement from?

          • charles perry

            On front page, it says they need your cell phone number! Hmmm… wonder what they do with THAT info??

          • Unique_Username99

            I read the article it does not mention cell number

          • charles perry

            I’m not about the article, EINSTEIN! I clicked on the link!!

          • Unique_Username99

            charles perry is now BLOCKED

          • charles perry

            Good riddance!!

          • GersonT1000

            On the Philo website FAQ it says:
            What do I need to watch Philo?
            To start watching, you’ll need: A mobile phone number (to identify you), a broadband internet connection, and a supported device.

            Why do you need my mobile number?
            We use your mobile number solely to identify you and start a 7-day trial watching Philo without a credit card or other information (we will ask you later for payment information).

            That’s pretty stupid. They should allow an option of giving your phone or credit card. With a credit card, you can just have a prepaid card that you use for things you don’t trust.

        • GersonT1000

          You can get a FreedomPop phone. For no cost (except the SIM card and any cheap AT&T or T-Mobile phone) you can get 200MB, 200 minutes and 200 text messages a month. You really should have one, even if you just use it for emergencies outside the home.

    • Unique_Username99

      It says “AT LAUNCH, this new service will support web browser, Roku devices, an iOS app, and Android via Chrome.”

      Doesn’t mean forever. Still waiting for YoutTube TV to have Roku support.

      • charles perry

        Ok , I can wait for Amazon but cell phone requirement is a deal breaker! I’m willing to use my credit card as long as the site is secure!!

    • Daniel

      get a google voice number and receive the text on your computer through that, but you really should have a cell phone, they are far better then landlines, especially for older people, like say you fall and get hurt walking from your car to your house and you can’t get up, a land line won’t help you there, a cellphone would be in your pocket. I personally don’t know anyone that doesn’t have a cell phone.

  • Unique_Username99

    If they could get Turner on board this would be prefect( and yes I know that probably means a $20 price point ). Especially for those that can get in locals via OTA( if that is important )

    • charles perry

      well Turner is another deal breaker. NEED TBS!!

      • Unique_Username99

        TBS is owned by Turner Eisntien

        • charles perry

          No Turner channels are owned by Time Warner, although they may have to sell them in order to merge with AT&T!!

          • Unique_Username99

            You were saying?

            http://www.turner.com/

          • charles perry

            Turner Channels are Time Warner EINSTEIN!!!

          • Unique_Username99

            Now you’re just begin a troll. I clearly said add TURNER channels. Nothing precluding them being added if a deal is struck. I’m not sure what your point is. TBS is part of Turner broadcasting FACT

          • charles perry

            TBS is part of TURNER channels which were sold to Time Warner in 1999! Check WIKIPEDIA, EINSTEIN!!

          • Brad Gibson

            Wrong. TBS is a division of Time Warner and is OWNED by Time Warner, who bought them 1996…more than 20 years ago.

        • ChanceDM

          Who is Turner Eisntien?

        • Brad Gibson

          Wrong. TBS is owned by Time Warner. It hasn’t been by “Turner Eisntien”, as you call it, since 1996.

    • pawdog

      Turner has sports. So not happening.

      • Unique_Username99

        Which sports are broadcast on Adult Swim and Cartoon Network?

        • pawdog

          Thing is they don’t sell individual channels. It’s the whole family or nothing. So if you don’t want sports. You don’t want Turner.

        • Daniel

          as a service provider like Philo (or Vue or Sling or any of the others) you don’t get to pick and choose which networks from one provider you want, the provider says you want this channel, well you have to also pay me for these channels. So it’s kind of an all or nothing

  • Fred Koot

    yep, people will still complain

  • Mike Stambaugh

    They’re seperating nick and making you pay extra for nick toons. So does that mean NickJR not even avaliable? I’d pay for this 16 is an amazing price. Id just prefer at least one kids channel. I’d even pay 20-25 if you’d add disneyJR.

    • PaperCoyote

      Nick Jr is in the $16 package.

      • Unique_Username99

        As well as Teen Nick

      • Mike Stambaugh

        I should have clicked the link before posting. Thanks though.

    • charles perry

      No Turner and no FX= no deal.

    • Unique_Username99

      Disney is not going to sign on for this they are starting their own streaming service.

      • Unique_Username99

        Nick, Nick Jr and Teen Nick are all part of the $16 package

  • Unique_Username99

    Oh to Charles Perry the cell phone number requirement is only for the free trial so you don’t have to enter CC info. Would you rather enter CC info for a FREE trial. So in case you accidentally forget you can get charged for another month like most other companies do? Weird how you’re more worried about them having your phone number and not your CC info.

    • charles perry

      Well ,some of us make sure we remember when we signed up so we can cancel BEFORE the trial period ends! Once again I ask what are they doing with the cell numbers? they’re SELLING them, EINSTEIN!! Also, I have fraud protection on my cards as well as identity protection!!

      • CordCutting2017

        Regardless of the sale or not of your # you can usually hit cancel on the service you’re selecting right after you sign up and the service keeps working through the end of the trial period. If you don’t want to give out your number then you should sign up for Google Voice and give them that number instead.

    • PaperCoyote

      I signed up to check it out and the phone number is for the first 48 hours of the free trial. After 48 hours you have to enter billing info to continue using the service. I was told you won’t be charged for another five days.

      • Unique_Username99

        My point is, it’s not big deal. Makes signing up easy gives you 2 days to see if you want to hand over billing info. not sure what the other guy issue is.

        • PaperCoyote

          Yeah. I like this approach. I am watching it now and I like the fact it was so easy to just try. Enter your phone number and they text you a code. Enter the code and your all set. I have a feeling I will be testing a little longer than the seven day free trial.

          • GersonT1000

            The real reason they’re doing this phone number requirement is probably to prevent people from signing up for multiple trial periods with made up emails.

  • Fred Koot

    Not a dvr, you can save shows to watch later for 30 days. So just organized on demand

    • charles perry

      I knew there was something funny going on. Also, sometimes there is so much you need more than 30 days!!

    • PaperCoyote

      Yep. It operates just like PS Vue but for 30 days instead of 28. Which sucks if you have a ton of shows but is fine if you have the time.

      • Fred Koot

        my point was you can’t ff or rewind?

        • Unique_Username99

          Not sure about THIS product on most on demand you can FF an RW

          • Fred Koot

            which services? I can’t with Vue or Sling. Im talking about past commercials

        • PaperCoyote

          In your “Saved” section the show will say VOD if it is available on demand. I saved something from the history channel and it did not say VOD next to that program and I was able to FF and rewind on that show. Then I tried S8 E1 of TWD as it showed VOD and I was able to FF and rewind. Also I checked out a show on demand on the travel channel and I was able to FF and rewind.

  • b_e_q

    3 concurrent streams, but is there a home network restriction for TV streaming players (like PS Vue and Hulu Live TV)?

    Or no location restriction (like all the other services)?

    • PaperCoyote

      It isn’t geo-locked like Vue and Hulu Live. It is limited to 3 streams no matter where you go.

    • TexMarque

      There are no local channels.

    • Daniel

      NO LOCATION RESTRICTION, no locals and its from the content owners so no crazy deals like that, infact it even says it will work in US Territories so I think that includes Puerto Rico and other places that have been shunned by the other streaming services.

  • mnsportsgeek

    People want a sports free streaming service. Sports free streaming service is offered. People complain that Turner, a network that carries sports, is not on it.

    • Carl Collie

      You win the internet today.

    • Unique_Username99

      I wasn’t suggesting sports you ninny. Sorry but we have a person that watches TBS and TNT( and not the sports that are rarely and only OCCASIONALLY on it.) Also Tuner Broadcasting also has Adult Swim, Cartoon Network, Tru TV and Turner Classic Movies NONE of which are news or sports. Any more smart aleck comments from you?

      • Carl Collie

        You are a very angry person…Turner uses sports as leverage to get carriage for all their channels, same as Fox, and Disney. They will never split their properties. Yes it sucks if you don’t watch sports, but it also sucks if you do, it works both ways, I get 20 channels I never watch, the perfect service is not available and never will be, at least at a price people will pay. I recommend you get Sling Orange and this new service ($36), or for a few bucks more you can get a DVR and more channels that show Sports and non-Sports (YouTube, Vue, Hulu) . Then you can use the little remote thingy and skip the sports when they are on, or hide the channels so you never see them. Isn’t choice and technology a great combination?

        • Unique_Username99

          Actually I’m very calm. Amazing you can sense feelings through the Internet. What a gift you have. You should share that with the world. I think insulting others because they made a SUGGESTION ( not a complaint ) is being both rude and angry. But perhaps you agree that it’s totally cool to be rude to people. I don’t but my set of values and ethics may be different than yours. Have a pleasant day.

          • Carl Collie

            You called the man a ninny it does not take great powers of prognostication to read you comments, or your other repeated comments insulting peoples intelligence.

          • Garry

            Just BLOCK him, that’s what I do.

          • DesignatedJizTowel

            Blocked him weeks ago. No need for DBs.

        • TV Barrington

          Unique_Username99 appears to be another “message troll” here (the other is phug) that jumps in, in an attempt to rile a person (or people) up.

    • Fred Koot

      I think Turner not being there has nothing to so with sports. With Time warner being pursued by Att, they are in no position to make deals.

  • Malignar

    Trying to figure out a way to get this for non sports programming and supplement with a cheap sports package. Not finding a way that can work though and still be under $50. There aren’t any packages with ESPN, Fox Sports, BTN that aren’t included in a $45 – $50 larger bundle. Sling maybe but you can’t have Fox Sports and Espn together.

    Ultimately this is very good for cord cutters, more ala cart options the better.

    • Fred Koot

      I think eventually every network will have its own services, but to get what you and many others want it will be in that price range. Vue at $45 fits my needs

    • pawdog

      This one, along with YouTube TV 51 bucks. Pretty close.

    • Daniel

      Sling Blue (or whatever the single stream 20 dollar sling is called) has ESPN and would only put you at 36 dollars all in.

      alternatively you can get both Blue and Orange at 40 and this would put you to 56 which is pretty close to your budget, but at that point you could also do this and Vue for the same price

  • SS

    I can combine this with YouTube TV to get everything I want and still save a lot of money that I would have wasted on cable. I hope they add Turner soon for my TBS and TNT stuff. They can blackout the few sports that happen on Turner networks.

    • Carl Collie

      Not going to happen, it is not the actual sports broadcast it it the fees paid to the leagues to broadcast, the network recoups that cost from subscribers, hence why they want it included in all cable packages to help spread that cost. They would gain nothing by blacking out the sports, but their addition would make the package more than 16 bucks.

      • SS

        You’re right. The sports deals wouldn’t let TNT and TBS out of the hook. On the brighter side, I have a feeling Google is close to getting a deal with Time Warner to bring TNT, TBS, CNN etc.

        • Carl Collie

          They need it to make them more competitive in the marketplace, that and finely not have to use Chromecast to watch on the TV. Once that happens I will look at it to compare to Vue, which I am very happy with especially at $34.99 a month.

          • SS

            Did you miss it? YouTube TV already released apps for Android TV, X-Box and they are coming to Apple TV and Roku in the next few weeks. I’ve been using the Android TV app for weeks now.

  • BigO

    In general, these OTT Live services do not interest me, but I love more competition in case that changes.

  • Malignar

    Thinking that youtube tv and philo would be a great combo for both sports and non sports fans. The big hurdle would be that Chromecast support is not available for philo and roku isn’t for youtube tv. Switching between devices would kinda suck. I may pick up a Chromecast today and give this combo a shot. I’m already paying $50 a month to DTVN and this combo would be $51 with DVR and more local channels. I’m willing to give up turner networks for more locals and full DVR support.

    • Fred Koot

      This has most of what You tube is missing with only A&E overlaping. You tube just needs more device support.

  • craig2web

    Definitely a step in the right direction. Hopefully they’ll offer skinnier packages in the future, or a full a la carte option. Of the channels offered, they only have a few that I’m interested in. Adding in popular news channels as options would help. The best part of this is that it’s more competition that will hopefully drive prices lower for all live streaming services as well as cable and satellite TV.

    • Daniel

      at this price point and factoring in operating costs of the equipment and personnel to run the service and develop apps I don’t see how much cheaper it could get.

      • craig2web

        The actual operating costs really aren’t very significant – there are smaller services that can be subscribed to for just a few $/month – heck, you can subscribe to Hulu basic thru early January for $6/month. Most of the monthly fees for these services is pure profit.

        • Daniel

          operating costs for ondemand only servers is quite a bit different from servers that need to be able handling the routing of 35-45 live channels as well as the ondemand, look at CBS All Access, it’s 6 bucks a month also or 10 without commercials, also you have to remember the licensing fees, these services aren’t “pure profit”, they probably aren’t making more then a dollar or 2 at most per subscriber after operating costs and licensing fees are paid.

          • craig2web

            You’re actually making my point for me – All Access is quite possibly the worst rip off in the streaming services area. You get at least 10x the content from a service like Hulu basic for the same price. CBS is essentially gouging for the sake of its CEO (who raked in about $70 million last year) and other executives and stockholders. The licensing fees are actually pretty minimal – when these channels are sold to outside 3rd parties (cable and satellite), the cost per channel per subscriber for most (if not all) of these channels is $0.25 or less (often, A LOT less), and that’s with a healthy profit built in. But Philo is a partnership of these providers, so Philo is getting these channels essentially at cost. So realistically, I think at least half of the $16/month fee is actually pure profit.

            FYI, there was a consumer group that did an analysis of the actual cost to cable companies for providing home internet to subscribers, and they determined that the actual cost to the cable companies is really only about $1/month per subscriber. Compare that to what you actually pay. Unfortunately, the entire entertainment industry is built on gouging and excess. The best thing consumers can do is educate themselves, give their business to those companies that provide the best value, and boycott those companies that give the least value.

  • Brad Gibson

    No news channels? Wrong. BBC World News is among the lineup, but obviously has a more international approach versus CNN or Fox News.

    • CordCutting2017

      I’ve detoxed from new channels since cutting the cord. Hearing the same loop of “news” repeatedly gets old. There’s a coupe of options like reuter’s channel on Roku, newsy, broadcast OTA, or even news.google.com where you can browse through and even setup keywords you’re interested in.

  • TexMarque

    This is the best OTT so far. No local channels, 3 streams, DVR, just mostly the good cable networks.

  • Greg S

    I wonder if “saved” shows also force commercials? All of these OTT options are great, but the base levels are typically a step back in regards to an actual DVR system. I had always hated paying equipment fees, but that DVR sure was nice.

    Does anyone else think it’s somewhat becoming like a fast food place? Sure, I can pick and choose to build a meal off the value menu (which I often do), but at some point I may be better off just getting a meal deal. I don’t know…. But I do appreciate the option to scale back a bit to shave some costs, and get out of contracts.

    It’s fun to watch the rapid evolution. I think the landscape will continue to change much in the next couple years, especially with Disney’s influence. But the network execs aren’t dumb, and I’m sure they will find ways to keep the revenue. With more people be required to watch commercials, they can probably charge a bit more there. And then we’ll subsidize that further with subscription fees.

    • TV Barrington

      I think this is a great question regarding commercials.

      I was wondering whether the service includes commercials, limited commercials, or is commercial-free. Since I haven’t noticed any mention of commercials yet on their homepage yet, I’m taking it for granted there will be 100% commercials. As far as their cloud DVR, if they do include commercials, can a person FF through them.

      • PaperCoyote

        I recorded something earlier today and I was able to FFW through commercials. Also I picked a couple of shows at random that were VOD and they did not have commercials. The VOD test was limited so may not be indicative of the entire service. But you can FFW and rewind on a VOD show so that was nice too.

      • Daniel

        it’s still TV, so if watching LIVE there will be commercials, it says you can skip commercials on “saved” (DVR) content, but Ondemand/ Look Back (72 Hour Rewind) you will be forced to watch the last commercial break

  • mr Dave

    $16 a month!! They are crazy!

    • Malignar

      Too much money? Too little?

      • mr Dave

        too much

        • Fred Koot

          This isn’t the 1920’s . $16 a month is cheap. Most cable packages are over $50

          • mr Dave

            Overpriced is overpriced. The Market will reject this. But if you want to pay inflated prices be my guest.

            I get a better offering with Sling offers more channels for $20 /month.

          • Fred Koot

            No Discovery, No Dvr. Sling is 30 channels for $20 this is 37 for $16, it will do well

          • TV Barrington

            I guess that technically it does have a DVR service. I was interested in whether they would offer this too. On their site, they state, “Save every episode of your favorite shows for 30 days” I do wish this time period was much longer, or there was a general 50 to 100 hour.

            It actually is showing there is Discovery on it’s homepage too.

            As far as channels, it does have many of my favs, but one noticeable that was missing for me was SYFY.

            I am glad there is another player on the field, and hopefully, this will keep the prices of all the services low, as well create/include more features.

        • Daniel

          to much????????? this is the cheapest channel package EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!, it’s HALF the price of the competition. This service has EVERY channel I would watch on Sling PLUS it has Discovery AND VELOCITY and does it for 14 dollars cheaper then I would have to pay sling to get all the other channels I want (25 dollar sling plus 1 5 dollar addon)

  • DonJ1973

    Dang man. Some really angry people in this thread. The ultimate perfect streaming service simply doesn’t exist. You get some, you lose some.

    • Daniel

      give this service device support and it’s perfect for me.

      • Fred Koot

        I asked about Fire tv support and they said it’s on the list, whatever that means

        • Daniel

          so did I, they said they didn’t have a time frame but both Apple TV and Fire TV where on the roadmap, so we will just have to see how long it takes them, only thing holding me back from subscribing.

  • CordCutting2017

    It’s funny to see the various complaints about this new service. The content is owned by the major outlets that account for 50-75% of your cable bill if you haven’t cut the cord already. 40 channels for $20/mo is a good deal considering your most basic cable package that includes all of the channels being offered would easily run you about $100/mo with equipment, taxes, fees, and miscellaneous charges the monopolies would be charging you. The idea behind most OTT options is being able to pair them up with other services to patch viewing holes. The only OTT’s that can provide 99% of the traditional experience are DTVN and PSVue when you subscribe to packages of channels above the $50/mo threshold. If you want something particular from a major brand it’s going to be like fitting a puzzle together no matter where you look.

    When I started my cord cutting adventure earlier this year and looked at the different options out there I made a spreadsheet of the shows I was currently watching from my TiVo list and the channels they showed up on. The majority of them were on the OTA channels which prompted getting an antenna and figuring out a DVR solution that wouldn’t be captive. I ended up with a small device that’s a PC running Windows 10 on it, a couple of HDhomeRun Connects, and Plex. Suffice to say I can record and trim commercials from broadcast shows which cuts down on the bloat and needing to FF through commercials.

    Bottom line is you have to do some homework to figure out what your viewing desires are, which platforms will provide them and what you’re willing to pay for them. Some services only support certain hardware like YTTV only doing Chromecast at the moment. Some using Apple TV and not Roku (most have adopted both platforms).

    It’s just not as simple as picking a plan, getting the cable box, and paying what you used to pay.

    • Daniel

      YUP, just checked, to get a cable package from my cable company with DIY network (which is only in there highest package level would be 88 bucks, then I would have to add a DVR to that.

  • Fred Koot

    If anyone has a Roku 3500x stick it’s not supported