Philo — which has been one of the least expensive streaming options in the United States for years — is finally increasing its monthly subscription fee. The company announced that on June 8, 2021, the price will jump 25 percent, from $20 to $25 a month.
The increase is for new subscribers. So if you're signed up at the $20-a-month rate before June 8, you'll keep that price for the foreseeable future. To lessen the blow of the increase a bit, Philo is increasing the amount of time that "recorded" content is available in its extended DVR option, jumping from 30 days to a whopping 365 days.
Why the price increase? (Which, by the way, is the first in Philo's three-and-a-half years of existence.) Licensing channels and content isn't getting any less expensive.
Writes Philo CEO Andrew McCollum:
As many of you know, our contracts with our content partners include fees we pay that go up every year, and a significant part of the cost of Philo is driven by our platform and billing partners. We are relentless in our focus on keeping our price low, so we do everything we can to reduce our overhead while managing these increasing costs. Even with those efforts, we can't offset these rising costs indefinitely, and this change reflects that reality.
The new $25 price still undercuts every other paid U.S. streaming option. The next closest is Sling TV, which presents its two tracks at $35 a month apiece, or $50 a month if you get both. (Which is what most people are going to do.) Hulu With Live TV, FuboTV and YouTube TV all have more channels than either Sling or Philo, and all start at $65 a month.
As of November 2020, Philo had some 800,000 subscribers, according to the company. That puts it at less than half the number of subs as Sling, but more than FuboTV. But perhaps not for long. FuboTV estimates that it'll eclipse 800,000 subs by the end of 2021.
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