It looks like the cord-cutting phenomenon is finally getting big cable companies’ attention. Variety reports that Time Warner Cable “is now marketing a low-cost bundle that includes a limited bunch of TV channels and HBO” that is “aimed at ‘cord nevers’ and others who aren’t interested in paying for a typical lineup of cable channels.” The new package, dubbed “Starter TV with HBO,” will be priced at $29.99 per month for the first year and “does not include a set-top box fees or other charges.”
Cable bundles have become increasingly unpopular recently as consumers are tired of paying higher monthly bills for bundles of channels that they never watch. But more cable subscribers are increasingly cutting the cord in favor of online streaming options such as Netflix and Hulu, which may finally be putting pressure on cable companies to offer more flexibility with their bundling options. HBO may also be under some pressure to ease up on its licensing fees since its programs are usually among the most pirated in the world.
Time Warner Cable’s move to offer a cheap HBO bundle comes after Comcast earlier this year unveiled its “Internet Plus,” bundle that offers 25Mbps Internet service with HBO GO, local TV channels and Comcast’s Streampix streaming movie and TV show service for $40 per month for the first year.