AT&T just completed the acquisition of DirecTV for $48.5 billion last week and they're already shaking things up. On Monday, the company announced that beginning August 10 they will deliver a TV and wireless service package nationwide - from one provider, with one bill.
AT&T customers who choose this deal will get $10 taken off their bill each month, and customer service will be streamlined down to a single number to call. Plus, AT&T employees will be able to set up customers' phones in the store so they can begin watching TV on apps before the service is installed in their home. The DirecTV content available on mobile devices won't be any different from what was already available.
In addition to the $10-a-month savings, AT&T TV services range from $50 to $125 per month for the first year, at which point regular prices will take effect. AT&T claims that saves customers about $35 a month, but offers like these are available from other providers.
AT&T is also offering $100 for each line switched from a competing phone company, as well as a $200 credit per line for trading in an old phone.
Since AT&T and DirecTV have had deals as separate companies for a long time, these changes aren't anything monumental. But it starts to align how TV is sold with how TV is consumed. TV isn't viewed as a standalone service anymore. TV is part of an overall media experience that people want not only on their actual television, but on their smartphones and tablets, too. As of now AT&T is the only company able to provide both wireless and TV services, while other companies must rely on partnerships which are generally lackluster.