After first being announced last year, the FCC and their chief, Tom Wheeler, finally approved the merger between telecommunications giant, AT&T, and satellite TV company, DirecTV late last month. This marriage essentially creates a home entertainment behemoth with AT&T’s phone, digital TV, and Internet business combined with DirecTV’s industry-leading satellite offering.
If you are a current customer of either organization, you probably won’t notice any changes in the short term. But let’s take a closer look to see what might be coming down the pike from the combined company.
DirecTV and AT&T Promise Customers Won’t Notice a Difference
Current DirecTV customers recently received an email from John T. Stankey, the Chief Executive Officer of AT&T Entertainment and Internet Services. He stressed that nobody needs to worry about any changes in their services. Stankey speaks of the combined firm providing “flexible packages of video, mobile and Internet services” with customers being able to “enjoy video entertainment and digital content from virtually anywhere.”
In short, expect new bundle packages to provide you with cost savings on phone, Internet, and digital TV. Mobile access to streaming content could be a boon for this new AT&T, especially considering DirecTV’s valuable exclusive with the NFL Sunday Ticket package. The ability to watch out-of-market NFL games is a leading factor keeping many football fans as DirecTV customers.
DirecTV Now Able to Offer a Real Internet Bundle Option
While DirecTV has offered Internet service in a bundle package previously, the AT&T DirecTV merger means better options for customers — provided that AT&T Internet service is available in their location. Make it a point to check out the local ISP options in your area. If you are a DirecTV subscriber who never considered AT&T in the past, significant cost savings might be in your future if you bundle Internet service with your satellite TV.
It is important to note that these new AT&T/DirecTV bundle offers are not available at the time of this writing. Expect them to arrive in the next few months as the merged companies work together to develop a variety of offers for new and potentially existing customers. They may even include DirecTV bundled with an AT&T wireless deal for areas where their U-verse product is unavailable.
Pay close attention to ISPs the world over the next few months as well. With the AT&T/DirecTV merger and the Charter/Time Warner merger raising the level of competition in the industry, consumers may very well benefit from the upcoming battle between the two giants.