The PlayStation Vue will shut down on January 30, after four years of existence. In a blog post, Sony blamed "the highly competitive pay TV industry for expensive content and network deals," and said it would rather focus on its core gaming business.
The live TV service was available as an Internet-connected app for a number of devices , including Roku ( ROKU ) Amazon ( AMZN ) Fire TV, Apple ] ( AAPL ) TVs and Sony own PlayStation consoles. The cheapest package for a few dozen channels and DVR starts at $ 49.99 per month.
Sony launched Vue in 2015 along with a wave of other cable-cutting packages offering live TV service while customers were looking for cheaper alternatives to cable or satellite. For example, Dish Network's Sling Sling, Live TV Hulu, Google TV YouTube, and the former AT&T name, called DirecTV Now (now known as AT&T TV Now), all began in two years.
But Sony's service never caught on. The eMarketer research firm recently estimated that Vue has 800,000 subscribers. The most popular live television service is Sling, with 2.4 million subscribers.
Packet bundles face pressure as software licensing deals continue to grow and companies pass on prices to customers. AT&T ( T ) which is the owner of CNN's parent company WarnerMedia, recently announced an appreciation of AT&T Now. The service is also struggling, losing 195,000 subscribers in the third quarter of this year. In total, the service has lost nearly 500,000 subscribers since early 2019.
More people are still using old-fashioned cable and satellite services, rather than what new rivals offer for streaming. EMarketer estimates that the number of US pay-TV households this year is 86.5 million, while those with a cutting cable package total 9.1 million.