Just as his company was announcing results showing revenues rising substantially, DIRECTV CEO Mike White has revealed that the US satellite TV provider is gearing up to launch 4KTV services in 2015 or maybe even the end of this year.
For the three-month period ended 30 June 2014, DIRECTV announced that second quarter 2014 revenues increased 5% year on year to $8.11 billion and reported operating profit before depreciation and amortisation (OPBDA) increased 3% to $2.15 billion and operating profit rose 5% to $1.42 billion. The revenue spike was driven by a sharp increase, 4.6%, in ARPU in its domestic territory as well as with strong DIRECTV Latin America (DTVLA) subscriber growth over the last 12 months. Indeed Sky Brasil and PanAmericana achieved record-breaking gross subscriber additions resulting in DTVLA second quarter net new customer additions of 543,000.
“Building on our first quarter momentum, DIRECTV delivered yet another excellent quarter of operating and financial results,” White said, commenting on the results. “We continue to extend our position as the world’s largest pay-TV service with industry leading growth by leveraging the strength of our premier brands and distinctive products and service offerings throughout the Americas.
“DIRECTV Latin America’s second quarter results highlight the tremendous success of our unparalleled FIFA World Cup coverage, while DIRECTV US continues to successfully execute on our overarching goal to balance top line sales with bottom line profitability. Overall, DIRECTV continues to deliver on our strategic imperatives as we prepare for the exciting opportunities that our merger with AT&T will bring to our customers, employees and key stakeholders."
And among these opportunities will be 4K/UltraHD services. In the earnings call associated with the quarterly announcement White told analysts that once the company had introduced two new craft and had surmounted challenges regarding content 4K services would be available in the shorter, rather than longer, term in particular through on demand platforms. He said: “We expect to be able to do 4K VOD before the end of the year. We're working to secure some content because one of the challenges is getting content that's shot in 4K. And we expect certainly in 2015 or early '16, to be able to stream live content. That'll somewhat depend on the scheduled launches we have of two new satellites…that will be going up over the next 18 months.
“So as we get those satellites up in the air, certainly, that's going to unlock a tremendous amount of incremental capacity for our system. And we fully expect some of that capacity to be used to be able to stream 4K content. With the two new satellites going up, it's going to give us a unique advantage of capacity to be able to provide a great customer experience. And as I said, we actually hope, even before we get those satellites up, to do VOD before the end of the year.”