Skinny Bundles are a controversial subject in the US. But we think they are coming as people continue to shift through the wide range of services and options they have for entertainment.   While their impact is at best uncertain, we can learn a little from the experience in Europe.

Skinny bundles drive down pay-TV pricing | Media Analysis | Business

Research from Strategy Analytics has revealed that pay-TV prices remain stable in most countries with the new and increasingly popular stripped-down offerings driving cost down in select places.

Read more: Skinny bundles drive down pay-TV pricing | Media Analysis | Business

Disney is Pro Skinny Bundles for its ESPN Content

The Walt Disney Company (DIS) continues to believe in the enduring value of ESPN. The company is pursuing a skinny bundle strategy for ESPN as millennials move away from pay-TV. In a bid to be a part of skinny bundles, early this month, Disney’s ESPN was added to Sony’s (SNE) PlayStation Vue service. Disney’s ESPN is also a part of Dish Network’s (DISH) Sling TV.

One of the reasons for consumers moving away from pay-TV has been the cost factor. While a cable connection costs anywhere from $100 to $150 per month, skinny bundles such as Dish’s Sling TV are far cheaper, at $20 per month. Another reason for companies offering skinny bundles is the rise of pure-play OTT operators such as Netflix (NFLX).

This is not the best idea of course from the Cable operators perspective. These smaller packages serve as another alternative to people being connected to cable.

ESPN decides it’s better to be on the inside with skinny bundles rather than being out in the cold


When ESPN joined Dish Network’s Sling TV skinny bundle service in 2014, it did so with some reservations and some stipulations. But as it finds cord cutting more than just a disturbing fad, the Worldwide Leader not only finds that it’s welcoming skinny bundles and is looking to join more.

And those numbers are causing ESPN to do an about-face with Verizon’s Custom TV and join Sony’s PlayStation Vue TV. Once worried that the skinny bundles might leave them out, now ESPN wants to be in and it shows the change in thinking in the new television landscape. People are watching TV at their convenience and on multiple devices.

This is all a brave new world and skinny bundles are just in their infancy. With AT&T planning an online DirecTV service for later this year and if Apple ever gets its TV service off the ground, ESPN wants to ensure that it will be part of it all so it can reach as many people as possible.

What This Means to You!

The old maxim remains true, everything is constantly changing.  And as you consider your options for internet and TV access, you have a limited but ever changing set of options.

Now to get the best deals for the way you choose to use the internet and access entertainment, you can spend hours talking to occasionally informed call center staff whose compensation may depend in part on how effective they are in upselling you to a package you do not need or want.  OR – You can contact The Connected Home, Minneapolis St Paul’s independent resource for Cable, Internet, Satellite, Phone and Home Security options.

They are more than a Comcast Store. They work with Dish TV, DirecTV,  as well as simple land lines for those who want them. They are a free service dedicated to helping you get the package that best meets your needs and budget.

Rather than calling a half dozen call centers, one single call will help get you the specific information you need to make a wise choice.

If you are moving within the Twin Cities or moving to the Twin Cities, they are the perfect resource to discuss your needs and to arrange a timely installation of your new services.