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Rogers to Launch IPTV; ‘Skinny Basic’ TV is For your Grandmother: CEO

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Rogers announced yesterday at its annual shareholder meeting in Toronto they plan to launch Internet protocol television (IPTV) by the end of 2016, a project to be spearheaded by Rick Brace, the president of the media business unit. IPTV offers customers more interactive and streaming video on demand options compared to traditional copper wire cable TV setups.

Rogers spokeswoman Jennifer Kett told The Canadian Press a true IPTV product is coming, saying “We’re taking the time to get it right and are making great strides in its development.”

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Rogers Media announced in January it would slash about 200 jobs, as news media and other outlets struggle to attract advertisers. CEO Guy Laurence said with the industry decline, the company has to take a good look at how much they invest in publishing, saying “You have to cut your cloth according to, you know, your revenues.” For Rogers, this means concentrating on its digital and sports properties.

Skinny Basic TV is for your Grandma: Rogers CEO

When asked by an analyst about which type of customer opts for “skinny basic” TV packages during the Rogers 2016 Q1 earnings conference call, CEO Guy Laurence responded “it’s your grandmother,” adding most customers are retaining their current packages.

Laurence used an analogy to McDonald’s, as to the choice customers have now when it comes to TV. Here’s a transcript of what he said (via Seeking Alpha):

The analogy I would give is that it’s a bit like going to McDonalds. We’ve now given customers the chance to buy a basic hamburger and fries separately and some do, but most customers stick with the meal option of a quarter pounder, fries and a drink because they’re better value for money. This is only an intermediate step to full pick and pay late this year and so we’ll have to see how the full picture unfolds as the year progresses.

How many of you have opted for a ‘basic hamburger’? Or are you sticking to your ‘quarter pounder meal’?

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