Sports-Free Streaming Bundle Closer to Launch: Report

Viacom, AMC, A+E, Scripps, Discovery back Philo

A low-priced skinny bundle of entertainment cable networks that excludes broadcasters and others carrying the biggest sports events is expected to launch in the next few weeks, according to a published report.

Viacom, AMC Networks, A+E Networks, Scripps Networks Interactive and Discovery Communications are putting some of their networks into the over-the-top package, which will cost less than $20 a month, according to The Wall Street Journal.

RELATED: Discovery CFO Says Viewer Taste Will Drive Skinny Bundles

Some of those programmers have had marginal success getting into the skinny bundle streaming packages that have already been launched, such as Sling TV, Hulu, YouTube TV and DirecTV Now. Those packages include broadcast networks and ESPN and cost about $40 a month.

The new service will be called Philo, named after both Philo Farnsworth, who invented television, and Philo, a company that specializes in streaming TV for college campuses.

RELATED: Philo Tunes in More Than 40 Universities

The number of traditional pay TV customers has been steadily dropping, raising concerns over lost revenue for both programmers and operators. Some media companies, such as the Walt Disney Co., have reported that virtual multichannel video programming distributors are offsetting the loss of traditional subscribers.

Some programmers, including HBO and CBS, have made their networks available as direct-to-consumer services and a variety of other direct-to-consumer video products have launched or are in the process of being launched.