Frontier to trial OTT video


Michelle Clancy

| 24 September 2015

Frontier Communications has launched a trial of an over-the-top (OTT) service called Freedom TV.

Following in the footsteps of DISH Network and soon, Verizon, the service will enable customers to watch their favourite local channels and TV shows on demand via streaming on their devices. It's also bundled with one-year free subscription of Amazon Prime and 500 hours of DVR offering.

Frontier is teaming with TiVo to launch Freedom TV, and will offer it in a bundle with its broadband service across its footprint.

"Driven by the company's network expansion, Frontier seeks organic growth," Zacks Equity Research said in an investor note. "It is evident that the millennials have a preference towards on-demand, cost-effective OTT services and the company is vying to capture this opportunity to increase its presence in the market."

During the first quarter, Frontier reported that it lost 7,700 customers to end the period with a total of 577,700 video customers. When it completes its acquisition of Verizon's properties in California, Florida and Texas, Frontier will have a total of 1.8 million video subscribers.

Speaking to investors during the Bernstein 31st Annual Strategic Decisions Conference, Dan McCarthy, CEO and president of Frontier, said the trial with TiVo is designed to look at both OTT and over-the-air options.

"We're looking at how to attack a segment of the market that's not interested in a pure linear play," McCarthy said. "We're in a trial right now with TiVo as our partner to bring a combination over-the-air and over-the-top content provisioning to a single user interface with time shifting and DVR."