Google is about to partner with big cable for a new YouTube service called ‘Unplugged,’ according to a report from Bloomberg.
YouTube has reportedly overhauled its internal architecture for Unplugged, and is planning to debut it in (or possibly before) 2017. Google is also in talks with major cable companies like Comcast, NBCUniversal, Viacom, 21st Century Foxand CBS for content, though it’s not believed any deals have been struck.
The paid service would bring live TV content to YouTube, and offer “custom” bundles. According to the report, Google hasn’t even settled on how it would deliver content.
It could offer ‘skinny’ bundles, much as Sling TV offers, which fits the $35 price-tag Google is entertaining for the service. Otherwise, Google is also considering an option that bundles less-viewed shows at a lower price point.
It would be a big win for YouTube, though it seems TV networks are exerting control. Apple reportedly tried something similar for Apple TV, and may have given up on it. Sling TV is the only provider who has been successful with this model, but it also has DISH’s backing.