A while back I had a horrible experience with my cable company, they charged me an arm and a leg for the service that I hardly ever used. I was paying almost 100 dollars for 2 channels that I really liked. I was watching about 2 hours of television a day, and the movie selection no longer made sense. Then I started thinking about how cool it would be for cable companies to offer a custom channel plan’ where people can register for only the channels they want. Each channel would have a different price, and we could select only what we care about the most. Several people had strong points against it; one of them was the fact that the cable companies would lose several of the programs when no one is buying the “Bears and Moose” channel – you get the point.
But Canada has a different idea; all of the cable companies have started offering packages where you can select which channels you watch the most. Our US companies still think is a horrible idea but Canada is not like the US so that doesn’t matter. Let me re-phrase that, the Canadian cable companies still think it’s a horrible idea, but the Canadian government is forcing them to do it.
According to the government, customers deserve greater control over the channels that they pay for. So, the cable companies have a “basic” starter package of 86 channels for $20 a month. The channels are all “low level” channels that no one in their right mind would pay for, but that’s the starter package to keep small companies afloat. Each additional channel will cost you an extra Canadian buck, dollar, pound, or loonie, whatever they are using right now.
The sad thing is that the companies are going to find ways to make up for the revenue losses, they will either start to put out more ads, or they will start to charge too much for specific channels. I guess we’ll have to see what’s going to happen to the companies in Canada, if it works, the companies in the US might get an extra push to offer the same service, but if it fails, the companies will have yet another reason to push this move in the back burner.