Services & Software

Live-TV streaming service FuboTV has almost 250,000 subscribers

FuboTV is still much smaller than its rivals, which are all backed by giants.

FuboTV launched in 2015 as a soccer-focused service but later widened to offer all kinds of channels to suit somebody who wanted to replace a typical cable package. 

FuboTV, which streams live-TV channels with subscriptions starting at $45 a month, said Monday it's close to 250,000 subscribers, more than double from a year earlier. 

So is that a lot or not? Depends how much slack you give to a service going up against a wall of Goliaths. Most of FuboTV's competitors are owned and operated by big tech or media companies: Dish runs Sling TV, AT&T backs DirecTV Now, Sony has Playstation Vue and Google operates YouTube TV. Hulu's live-TV service enjoys not one but four titans backing it up (Disney, Comcast, Fox and AT&T). All these companies are vying for the same prize: dominating virtual television as viewers like you cut the cord of pricey, rigid cable and satellite packages.

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And with corporate ownership comes benefits like a well-funded marketing machine, a giant built-in base of subscribers to pitch to and the financial capacity to lose a lot of money on a service without having to reckon with it for a very long time. Fubo doesn't have those advantages. 

Sling TV, the first and biggest live-TV streaming subscription, has 2.3 million subscribers, for example. DirecTV Now has 1.8 million

But FuboTV, which launched in 2015 as a soccer-focused service before broadening its offering, dropped other stats about its business Monday: Average time spent watching FuboTV per user was 51 hours last month -- that's about an hour and 45 minutes every day. It hit $100 million in annualized run rate last month, which means that's how much revenue it would make for the year if every month had the same sales rate. 

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