An ESPN lawsuit has forced Verizon to dramatically change the company's so-called "skinny" TV bundles. Launched in April of 2015, Verizon's "Custom TV" packages offered a stripped down channel lineup for $65 bundled with broadband service, or $55 as a standalone TV option without Internet. While we noted how the deal was marred by the usual number of below the line fees and surcharges, it was novel in one way: it pulled the most expensive part of most cable TV bundles (ESPN) out of the core lineup.
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Verizon's updated offerings include two Custom TV plans: one that comes with sports programming, and one that doesn't. Custom TV "Essentials" includes Fox News, Discovery, and a basic platter of broadcast and 78 common cable viewing options. Custom TV "Sports & More" comes with the broadcast networks and 59 cable channels, many more geared toward sports. Users can also tack on additional "channel packs" at $6 each.
According to Verizon, users can sign up for either package for $55 per month standalone or $70 per month as a triple play bundled with 100 Mbps symmetrical broadband and phone service. As with Verizon's old Custom TV options a variety of fees will jack up your monthly price, which will also balloon after your two-year contract expires, making the option a bit let sexy once you actually get your bill.
"The original Custom TV has proven very popular since we launched it last year, and we’ve incorporated our customers’ feedback to make the next generation of Custom TV even better with a simpler choice and a much wider variety of channels available," states Verizon, pretending that ESPN's lawsuit had nothing to do with the shake up.
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