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Vidgo outage enters second week, company still offering bill credits to customers

Service could be back online later this week, a source tells The Desk.

Service could be back online later this week, a source tells The Desk.

Vidgo offers a number of sports-centric channels from Fox, Disney and other programming partners.
Vidgo offers a number of sports-centric channels from Fox, Disney and other programming partners. (Graphic by The Desk)

Vidgo is directing subscribers to use standalone network apps to watch live television and on-demand programming as an outage afflicting the streaming cable TV alternative enters its second week.

Last Friday, the company issued its most-comprehensive update yet on the situation, which started in late September after an unnamed third-party vendor pulled its support for Vidgo’s phone, tablet and smart TV apps.

“We certainly appreciate your patience as we continue to move forward on a resolution,” a Vidgo spokesperson said in a statement posted to Facebook, which has since been removed. “We have been working in good faith with the vendor involved and believe we are making solid progress. We do anticipate a full return of service in the near future; while we do not have a specific timeline, we will continue to share new information and updates.”

The situation started September 29 when Vidgo says the third-party vendor attempted to raise its service rates on the company. The demand came after normal business hours that Friday, Vidgo said, and when it did not immediately respond to the third-party vendor, the technology provider pulled its support for Vidgo’s streaming apps.

The end result left customers unable to watch more than 100 live television channels offered by the service through Vidgo’s apps for Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Android TV, phones and tablets. It also meant subscribers could not access shows and movies that had been recorded from live channels in their plans, nor could they watch on-demand programming on Vidgo.

As a workaround, Vidgo said customers could use standalone network apps like ABC, ESPN, Fox Sports, FX Now and Discovery Go to watch on-demand shows with their Vidgo credentials. Some of those so-called “TV Everywhere” apps also offer simulcasts of live channels available through Vidgo, depending on a customer’s programming plan.

The temporary solution means most customers are still unable to watch the majority of the channels they pay for in their plan. As a courtesy, Vidgo says it is offering customers various service credits and discounts if they continue their subscription, to include two weeks of free service and a $10 per month discount over the course of six months.

Last week, a Vidgo executive told The Desk the company is working through various ways to offer more refunds to customers. Some subscribers may receive a full refund if they did not use their Vidgo credentials to watch network programming through a standalone TV Everywhere app, and the company is currently working through various refund-related customer service requests to see which customers have used some of the benefits of their subscription over the past two weeks.

Less clear is when the outage will actually be resolved. A source familiar with the matter said the issue could be resolved later this week, but they did not have more information to offer.

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is the publisher of The Desk and reports on the business and policy matters involving the broadcast television, streaming video and radio industries. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, Disney-ABC, Tribune Broadcasting and McNaughton Newspapers. Matthew is based in Northern California, has won numerous awards in the field of journalism, and is a member of IRE (Investigative Reporters and Editors).