Altice USA already has Altice One for its full-package video subscribers but CEO Dexter Goei said the company’s new Stream box fits better for its broadband-only subscribers.
During this week’s earnings call, Goei said the Stream devices present a much lower capex option than Altice One and reflect the shrinking amount of Optimum and Suddenlink subscribers who are taking up both video and broadband. He said that two to three years ago, his company’s video attachment rates were in the high-50s to low-60s two but have now dipped down to the 30% to 35% level.
“There is a desire for our…broadband subscribers to have a video product alternative, that's very cheap and cheerful, right?,” said Goei, according to a Motley Fool transcript. “And to the extent that they ever want to get a bundled package on an OTT basis, they can do it also over the Stream product. So, it's really a capex play, being reactive also to what our consumers want and how our consumers are behaving today with most of their activity on the video side, the OTT-based. And if you really look at what we spend and how easy to deploy Stream box versus an Altice One box, it's a no-brainer.”
Altice USA last week introduced Stream, a new 4K Android TV streaming device available to its Optimum and Suddenlink broadband-only customers. The device provides access to video content through streaming apps and services available on Google Play along with a free ad-supported streaming television service with 50 live streaming channels including News 12, i24NEWS, Cheddar News, Kabillion, Bon Appétit, Wired, Reelz and Stadium, all of which are presented “in a familiar live TV setting.”
The introduction of Optimum/Suddenlink Stream comes as Altice continues to slowly but steadily shed video subscribers. The company reported video net losses of 48,000 for the second quarter—a number than doesn’t account for the 12,000 Morris Broadband video subscribers it recently acquired. The company lost 35,000 video subscribers in the same quarter of 2020.