Google has finally found success in the TV market with its YouTube TV offering. According to YouTube CEO Neal Mohan, the service now has over 8 million subscribers, making it the fourth-largest pay-TV service in the US. This growth is significant, considering YouTube TV had only 5 million customers in 2022. It likely received a boost in subscribers when it started offering the NFL's Sunday Ticket service as an add-on to its channel package.
YouTube's success in the pay-TV industry highlights Google's persistence and patience in cracking the TV market. The company has been attempting to enter the TV-ad business since 2007 and even developed its own TV operating system. However, these efforts were not as successful as desired. In 2017, Google decided to sell a bundle of TV channels, similar to its competitors, and has since experienced steady growth.
The rise of YouTube TV also reflects the decline of conventional pay TV. Many viewers have either cut the cord or never subscribed to pay TV in the first place. Some pay-TV providers, such as Comcast, have shifted their focus to broadband services, which have higher profit margins and are essential for most households regardless of pay-TV subscriptions.
Despite the shrinking pay-TV industry, Google remains committed to expanding its presence. This is evident in its $2 billion-a-year deal to sell NFL games. Google likely sees potential in the 70 million people who still pay for TV and aims to capture a larger share of this market.
However, it is worth noting that Google has not provided specific details about the profitability of YouTube TV. This raises questions about the service's financial performance and whether it is a truly lucrative business for the company.
In conclusion, Google's YouTube TV has become a significant player in the pay-TV industry, with over 8 million subscribers. This success showcases Google's determination to enter the TV market and capitalize on the revenue streams of subscriptions and ads. While conventional pay TV is declining, Google sees value in expanding its presence in the industry. However, the financial performance of YouTube TV remains undisclosed, leaving room for speculation about its profitability.