|Google CEO Larry Page could merge NFL Sunday Ticket into the company's top of the line internet services|
The NFL's current contract with Direct TV has the television provider paying $1 billion per year. The contract is up after the 2014 season and its a very real possible the company will let it expire, as ProFootballTalk explains:
DirecTV CFO Pat Doyle said in March that the satellite giant could strike a non-exclusive deal with NFL or dump the package completely when the current deal expires after the 2014 season.
The value of the Sunday Ticket package has diminished in recent years, given the rise of the RedZone package, which whips fans around from game to game, focusing on the most compelling moments.
With the contract expiring so far into the future, it's unlikely we'll hear much more on this for awhile.
However, as a former Direct TV and Sunday Ticket subscriber, I could only see DirectTV losing control over the package being a good thing. The combination of poor customer service and plenty of fees makes the package not worth the headache unless you're living outside of your team's region.
Google could change a lot of that.
One of Google's recent initiatives has been to enter the world of television. One such was they've been doing this is with paid YouTube channels (Google owns YouTube). Imagine an a la carte system where you could just choose to pay for the channels you want, instead of being looped into an expensive monthly package with plenty of channels you'll never even turn on. This is the goal behind the paid youtube channels. If Google adds NFL Sunday Ticket to that lineup, their product gets immensely stronger.
Not to mention the integration that would also likely take place in Google's other products such as Android and Chrome. Undoubtedly Google could create an amazing Sunday Ticket mobile app and allow from streaming via the chromecast device. For those not following the tech world, Chromecast is a $35 HDMI dongle that you plug into your TV and can stream video, music, etc. from your phone to your TV. It will work cross-platform too.
While the Sunday Ticket service is unlikely to all of a sudden become cheap, it could be delivered in a much more convenient and modern way should it fall into Google's hands. Here's hoping it does.