Verizon is offering a new programming package to customers in its FiOS footprint – and you will quickly notice that sports is the missing ingredient. The FiOS Select HD package offers subscribers more than 140 channels, with 30 in high definition. The price is nice as well – just $49.99 a month.
But if you have FiOS TV, you might be wondering what networks have been stripped out to get the price under $50 a month. There are some gaping holes to be sure, but if you don’t care about live sports programming, this new FiOS TV package might work for you.
The new Select HD package offers a $15 savings over the entry level FiOS Prime HD package. Eliminated are all sports channels (mainly several ESPN feeds as well as regional sports networks) TNT, Fox News, and Travel channel. TNT is probably the biggest name there outside of ESPN – the channel isn’t really classified as a sports channel though they do broadcast a number of live NBA games each week.
The package is a good choice for those who aren’t interesting is the sports channels outside of those found on your local channels. The cost of regional sports network programming continues to rise, forcing Verizon and other distributors like DIRECTV to find ways of managing costs. Verizon recently announced a surcharge on sports programming of $2.42 per month on all packages outside of the new Select HD offer. DIRECTV also has introduced additional fees to help cover the high cost of sports channels.
The move will likely lead to the creation of similar packages by other distributors. DISH already offers the America’s Top 120 without regional sports channels, saving customers $10 a month. While DIRECTV and U-verse have not yet created packages like this, its looks likely in the months ahead.