Roger Lynch, head of Sling TV (now owned by Dish Network), claimed he isn’t worried about subscriber churn. Churn, according to Lynch, isn’t as expensive or damaging for an OTT provider as it is for pay-TV operators. The cost of churn for pay-TV, Lynch observed, exists in setting up new subscribers, which could run $850 per household, and includes marketing, sign-up costs, and installing leased set-top boxes.
For OTT providers like Sling, Lynch continued, “It’s almost no cost to bring someone on.” Sling offers new customers a free trial, and if they decline, they can always come back later and sign up. And since the service is delivered over streaming devices owned by the user (like Roku or Amazon Fire TV), there’s no hardware overhead and no up-front acquisition costs.