Over the last few months almost one thousand over-the-air TV stations from ABC, Fox, CBS and NBC announced that they have struck deals to come to services such as DIRECTV NOW, Hulu, fuboTV, and PlayStation Vue.
Recently during our Q&As on YouTube and Facebook I have been flooded with questions about when these channels will show up.
So we decided to answer the question of why is it taking so long for these services to get access to these CBS, Fox, NBC and ABC affiliates? It turns out to be fairly complicated to stream local TV on a live TV streaming service.
To find out what is happening, Cord Cutters News talked with someone who has worked on a live TV streaming service on the process of streaming local TV stations. This is what they told us about the holdup.
One big issue is the servers. ABC and other affiliates have strict rules about security on these servers. They want to make sure their live feed won’t easily end up on some pirate site.
This also explains why when demand spikes live TV services can’t just run out and quickly add more server locations to handle the load.
The FCC also has an old rule that forces streaming services to stream local affiliates from inside their markets. That means if you get a Chicago local ABC it must be streamed from inside Chicago. There has been talk about changing this rule, but as of today that rule remains. So that means services such as DIRECTV NOW and PlayStation Vue need to install servers in these markets.
If recent history is any example, it is taking three to four months from the announcement before the first wave of locals start to show up. Now that does not mean they will all show up at the same time. It seems like companies are rolling out locals in batches. So if a 100 locals are announced, they may roll out in groups of 20.
PlayStation Vue is a great example of this. When it got rights to a huge batch of CBS affiliates, it started to roll them out in groups of 20 at a time over the course of a month.
We are likely just now seeing the first roll outs of what will likely be a flood of locals over the next few months.
Need cord cutting tech support? Join our new Cord Cutting Tech Support Facebook Group for help.