YouTube TV is struggling to control the public outcry over the biggest price hike in its history. Announced earlier this week, the move saw the Internet TV service increase its subscription cost by a whopping 30% to $65 per month. Product Management VP, Christian Oestlien, argued the jacked-up price “reflects the complete value of YouTube TV”, but a vocal portion of the platform’s user base disagreed.
There’s hence no shortage of YTTV critics to be found on social media this week, with their complaints themselves being as varied as they come. E.g. while some are shocked YouTube TV would increase its prices during a global pandemic, others are pointing out it’s now the most expensive cord-cutting option in the U.S. by some degree. The latter point is particularly poignant in light of the fact YouTube TV started out as arguably the most affordable alternative to cable television just three years ago.
I can't wait to find an alternative to @YoutubeTV. ANOTHER price increase; adding channels that NO ONE ASKED FOR AND NO ONE WANTS. Increasing prices during a pandemic while millions are out of work. What a horrible way to do business. #YoutubeTV pic.twitter.com/7vUjwR0jwh
— Brian Barrington (@brianbdotcom) June 30, 2020
“Time is a flat circle” – YouTube TV, probably
Much has changed since its 2017 debut, however. The $35 monthly fee increased in an exponential manner by almost 85% in total as YouTube kept adding new channels to its portfolio. The crux of the issue is that many subscribers never cared for those additions, nor were they given the option to opt out of them. The same holds true for this latest expansion which introduces eight channels from ViacomCBS to YouTube TV.
Existing YTTV subscribers will see their subscription costs rise on July 30th, though many claim they’ll cancel their memberships by then. Naturally, YouTube TV expects the extra revenue to more than cover for the loss in subscribers incurred following the move. While only time will tell whether that’s just wishful thinking or keen business sense, there’s no denying that cord-cutting services are becoming more akin to cable TV subscriptions by the day. And they were meant to replace them, not join them.