A feature article in Fortune magazine considers the prospects for DIRECTV and figures that interactivity will be an important factor in the competition with cable.
“If you didn’t know better, chances are you wouldn’t peg Britain – for years the land of the BBC and, let’s face it, not much else – as one of the world’s most exciting places to watch television. It wasn’t. At least not until Rupert Murdoch came along.”
With these words opens a long article on DIRECTV’s plans to secure a dominant position on satellite television in the United States, primarily, it argues, by importing interactive features from its British cousin, BSkyB.
Specifically, the sort of interactive services pioneered by Sky will be applied to DIRECTV’s NFL coverage, based on a five year $3.5 billion deal to continue its Sunday Ticket offer.
In the year since News Corp gained control of DIRECTV the business has been re-focussed, but it is suggested that this is only a prelude for the competition to come.
“We’ve been helped by the fact that we are very focused on the television experience,” chief executive Chase Carey is cited as saying. The cable companies “are fighting the broadband battle and a telephony battle. And those businesses are much more commoditized than television.”