Comcast's NBCUniversal will increase content at the expense of ads on its news channels and some entertainment shows. NBCU may also offer family film nights or marathons on some services, with sponsorships replacing many commercial pods.
Social distancing has driven especially large increases in TV viewing among younger audiences, the Video Advertising Bureau reports, with children 2-11 watching 39% more and adolescents 12-17 increasing their viewing time 46%. People aged 18-34 also watched 83 million hours more during the week that started March 16, compared to the last seven days of February.
The lingering coronavirus crisis could mean that 3GPP completes Release 17 of its 5G standards later than scheduled or changes its priorities and scope, some analysts and industry executives say. Another delay might come from new legislation that requires more federal involvement with standards development.
Charter Communications will increase its minimum wage to $20 an hour, up from $15, over two years, accelerating a plan already under discussion. Frontline workers will receive a retroactive raise of $1.50 immediately, as well as the same amount next March, due to their vital services during the ongoing pandemic.
Regulators should continue to employ census blocks, rather than larger tracts, as the measurement in the reverse auction for the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund, NCTA -- The Internet & Television Association told the Federal Communications Commission. The group said switching to more expansive census tracts would put cable companies at a disadvantage economically by requiring larger network buildouts.
Cable networks have scrambled to adjust their original programming schedules due to production and other issues stemming from the coronavirus pandemic, even as viewing has soared. AMC was forced to delay its next spinoff of "The Walking Dead" and FX postponed the fourth year of "Fargo," but lockdowns spurred BBC America's "Killing Eve" to start its third season on April 12, as production wrapped before the crisis hit.
T-Mobile has restricted its Metro by T-Mobile brand to exclusive distributors and given stores that offer other prepaid services 120 days to stop selling it, the National Wireless Independent Dealer Association said. NWIDA estimated that the move affected at least 250 stores and maybe as many as 750.
The top three telecoms will likely keep to their budgeted 5G capital expenditures outlays despite financial pressures stemming from the coronavirus crisis, Fitch Ratings predicts in a new report. Carriers will retain "adequate cash flow and liquidity flexibility" to forestall any cuts in building their 5G networks, Fitch says.
Mike Sievert, T-Mobile's CEO, mentioned Ericsson and Nokia as vendors for the company's upcoming $43 billion 5G network upgrade during a CNBC interview. Sievert didn't talk about Samsung Electronics, which had been one of three primary suppliers for Sprint before T-Mobile acquired that carrier.
AT&T has dropped sales of U-verse, though it will continue to provide service to current customers, in order to focus on the AT&T TV streaming platform. U-verse's subscriber base reached 6 million in 2015, but was down to 3.44 million last year.
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