American television network ABC has updated its iOS app with new live streaming television from local stations in Philadelphia and New York City. The change is an attempt to encourage viewers to keep their cable subscriptions as more and more users are ridding themselves of pay television and "cutting the cord", reports The New York Times.
Viewers will need to establish eligibility by verifying that they have an eligible pay-TV account with a local cable or satellite television company, and that they are within the local viewing area.
ABC may be expanding viewership on its iOS app, but it will be stepping back the availability of its shows through Hulu and ABC.com, limiting access to paying cable and satellite subscribers.
The Walt Disney Company, which owns ABC, says its live stream will be available in six cities where Disney owns the local affiliates later this summer, plus 13 more markets where Hearst Television owns the local stations including Boston and Pittsburgh.
The company is negotiating with the conglomerates that own the more than 200 ABC affiliates to livestream those channels as well.