Cutting The Cord. The Future Of Bundling

As more Americans find the price of their bundling packages too expensive to bear, there also lies a race between content providers in the background to grab their share of the streaming video market. 

Last month HBO announced they too will launch its streaming service in 2015.

Adding to the mix, online retailer Inc will release a new ad-supported video streaming service early next year, the New York Post reported, citing sources.  The new service will compete directly with Hulu and Netflix Inc, whose charges begin at $7.99 a month for customers in the United States.

HBO CEO Richard Plepler, provides insight to the company's evolving business model, and partnership with distributors.

"I don’t think it competes at all," Plepler said. "The most important thing to remember about our Amazon decision is its three-year-old window library and what we basically decided is somewhere in the neighborhood of 65 or 70 percent of Amazon Prime subscribers do not get HBO. So we thought this was a terrific opportunity to not only monetize some of our library, but to give some of that consumer base an opportunity to sample and taste some of the best HBO programming."

Plepler hopes that the content HBO is licensing to Amazon Prime helps bringing consumers "back into [our] system, so that they can become full subs." He highlighted that HBO "grew this year more than any time in 30 years" and that the move by HBO to license its content to Amazon will help it in gaining more viewership.

The company has also shied away from licensing its content to streaming services like Netflix. It recently provided content to Amazon Prime, but only older shows, suggesting that it might one day want to launch a streaming service of its own. 

Netflix continues to dominate North American networks, lapping rivals like Amazon Instant Video, Hulu, and HBO GO however "Amazon Instant Video gaining bandwidth share in North America during 2014.  It will be fascinating to see how a standalone HBO GO streaming option will impact networks when it launches in 2015," Dave Caputo, president and CEO of Sandvine, said in a statement.

It is clear, however, that content providers are crowding into the space.  The winner = the American consumer.  The possible loser = the bundle (and probably NFLX).

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