ESPN, FOX, and WarnerBros Discovery are teaming up to create a standalone mega sports app that will feature thousands of sporting events in one single place.
Planned for a launch in late 2024, the app from the trio of media giants plans to pool together exclusive live sports, including soccer. Those soccer rights include the FIFA 2026 World Cup, LaLiga, Bundesliga, select MLS and NWSL games, as well as matches from USMNT, USWNT, UEFA, and CONCACAF.
Currently, those soccer events require different platforms to stream. FOX Sports doesn’t have a direct-to-consumer streaming app. WarnerBros Discovery just added sports to MAX, while Disney’s ESPN+ has been a leader in the space since its launch.
In what could be a killer app for sports fans, the all-in-one sports streaming service would also have access to linear TV channels and ESPN+. Each of the following channels would be available as well: ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, SECN, ACCN, ESPNEWS, ABC, FOX, FS1, FS2, BTN, TNT, TBS and truTV.
Still, the soccer content is merely the surface of what will be available in this app. According to ESPN, the mega app will also feature NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, thousands of games from college sports, PGA Tour, Wimbledon, UFC, NASCAR, and F1, among many other major sporting events.
Outside of the traditional pay-TV bundle
ESPN also mentioned that this is a method for viewers to escape the traditional pay-TV contracts and subscriptions that have these channels. Different subscriptions provided channels that sports fans may not use. In a way, they would be paying for things they do not need. Therefore, this joint venture fittingly caters to those who only want access to sports, no matter which sport it is.
Each of the media companies will own one-third of the app. This would be its own subscription service. However, there are potential savings when bundling with ESPN+, Hulu, and Max. There is no name for this app, nor have pricing details been mentioned. That said, it is coming in the Fall of 2024, according to ESPN.
Our Pick:Includes: Bundesliga, LaLiga, FA Cup, & More
Analysis about ESPN FOX WarnerBros app announcement
By Christopher Harris
ESPN, FOX and WarnerBros Discovery mean business. With ESPN’s marketing power coupled with the exclusive rights that FOX and WarnerBros Discovery have, this joint venture makes a lot of sense. After all, instead of competing against each other for customers and driving up the price of sports rights fees, why not work together to help each other grow?
At the same time, this is a shot to the bow of the competition. A mega app from ESPN/FOX/WarnerBros is in direct competition against several other tech and media giants. Those include Amazon, Apple, NBCUniversal, Paramount and Fubo. At the same time, Netflix has been dipping its toe in the water by acquiring the rights to sports products, most recently WWE.
What today’s move by ESPN, FOX and WarnerBros Discovery may do now is to set off a rally of other joint ventures or mergers in the media world to compete against the new streaming empire. Watch this space.
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