Skinny Basic TV Coming For Canadians

Skinny Basic TV Coming For Canadians

Paying more than $25 for your basic cable or satellite package? Well keep your eye out soon because Television viewers will be able to buy only the channels they want, one by one or in small packages by the end of March 2016, TV subscribers will have the option of adding those networks to a slimmed-down, “skinny” basic package costing no more than $25 per month.

So, to start with all TV providers will have to offer a $25/month basic package. So for most people who currently subscribe to a basic package and are paying more than $25/month then they can avail of this price reduction.In addition to the basic $25 package, cable and satellite providers must move to a pick-and-pay system or offer small bundles of channels, also by the March 1 deadline. The basic package must include channels on the CRTC’s mandatory distribution list, including CBC, CTV and Global, and aboriginal and minority English or French language channels. In addition a group of U.S. channels could be included, usually CBS, NBC, ABC, FOX and non-commercial channel PBS. At least 10 of the channels must be local or regional, including the community channel and the proceedings of the provincial legislature, if available.  TV viewers will then be able to supplement this with either individual channels or small bundled channel packages.

The decision caters to consumers who have vented their frustrations to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), wondering why they had to pay for channels they never watch but to just get the ones they like. And so, if you take a look at the statistics over the course of the past 3 years, media consumption habits are definitely changing and now many Canadians have already ditched cable and satellite subscriptions in favor of cheaper online streaming services such as Netflix or the Canadian-owned Shomi. That, along with many free options like YouTube and cheap set top poxes like Apple TV, Roku, and Chromecast are paving the way for cord cutters. And so, I would think giving users a cheaper more flexible choice for TV packages might help slow that exodus giving the TV and Satellite companies times to keep their user base.

With that in mind, it’s possible this decision could have a negative effect. With greater choice comes the prospect that some customers may pay more, a number of channels will likely die out, and the companies that provide TV could see major revenue losses that spur job losses and shrink the range of programs produced. It’s also possible that unbundling some of the more bigger stations like HBO, AMC or A&E might force them to pull out of Canada all together or cost the viewer more in the long run.

On another note, CRTC chairman emphasized that this change was implemented to set out a roadmap to give all Canadians the freedom to choose the television content that meets their unique needs and budgets. If you go to , click on the TV & Radio link, you can find out more.

CRTC – Slimmer Basic TV Bundles




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