Disney’s ABC to start first streaming of live broadcast shows

“Disney’s ABC network will become the first broadcast network to stream its shows live online through an ongoing service, starting with viewers of its TV stations in New York and Philadelphia on May 14 and expanding to its other stations by the end of the summer,” Ronald Grover reports for Reuters.

“To promote its WATCH ABC service, through the end of June Disney is allowing all viewers of its WABC station in New York and WPVI station in Philadelphia to watch live ABC programs online or on mobile devices by downloading the WATCH ABC app,” Grover reports. “The app will initially allow users to be able to watch the service on Apple’s iPad and iPhone and on the Kindle Fire device, and later this summer on Samsung Galaxy devices.”

Grover reports, “Other networks are expected to follow Disney, as traditional broadcasters scramble to keep viewers watching its programs instead of drifting off to Netflix and other online services. Later this summer, Disney said it will expand use of its WATCH ABC service to authenticated subscribers that receive its TV stations in Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Houston, Raleigh-Durham and Fresno, California.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Note: The Steven P. Jobs Trust, of which Laurene Powell Jobs is trustee, is the largest shareholder in Disney with more than 137 million, or 7.7%, of all outstanding common shares. Jobs became its largest shareholder when Disney bought his Pixar Studios in 2006.


    1. Reliable live content streaming costs money, so OTA broadcasters adding it as a distribution channel need to offset that cost with higher ad rates. If the market won’t bear that, we won’t see widespread content distribution of this type.

      1. You are already paying them. You should not have to pay extra for streaming. Most people today don’t get cable or only watch programs via the net. They will eventually have to go there anyway and in the future probably all together.

  1. It only took decades but maybe common sense is finally setting in.

    NBC was promoting hockey on twitch.tv last week. What was missing? A good question. What was missing was a way to watch the games online. They were advertising old tv on the very platform supplanting them. Fail NBC.

    1. NBC Sports already has an app for live sports on their OTA network channel. I used it for watching some Stanley Cup playoff games and for watching some golf recently.
      All broadcast networks should have an app that allows users to watch shows live WITHOUT a subscription. Put commercials or banner ads in it. If you want to avoid the ads, you pay for the app. If all network sports were carried FREE streaming via an app, they’d get a huge following. I shouldn’t have to subscribe to the ripoff cable TV channels to view the shows. Sell ads for streaming shows.

  2. That is amazing. 137 million, or 7.7% of the shares. And with that dividend each quarter which I hope is reinvested in the stock this will become a monster in 10 years 🙂

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.