DirecTV may embrace the niche for online video service

DirecTV is looking to offer an online video service for cord cutters and others that don’t want to pay for a full-blown cable subscription, but it’s not looking at the usual TV bundles: The company wants to instead target niche audiences with tailored programming, reports the Wall Street Journal. Two example audiences mentioned in the Journal story: kids and Latinos.

DirecTV executives talked about these plans at an investor meeting this week, and promised to follow up with more concrete information within the next 12 months. But even without many details, the strategy is interesting: Intel (S INTC) and others have in the past tried to launch full-blown internet TV services, offering cord cutters access to live streams of their favorite networks over the internet.

However, balancing the wishes of consumers and TV networks has proven to be difficult. Intel eventually decided that it didn’t want to take on the challenge, and is reportedly now looking to offload its still-unlaunched TV service to Verizon. (S VZ)

At the same time, there has been growing interest in niche video platforms and programming. Japan’s Rakuten acquired, which specializes in foreign TV shows, for a reported $200 million in September, and the Chernin Group just bought a significant source of content in the anime-focused Netflix, (S NFLX) Amazon (S AMZN) and Hulu all also have embraced kids as a key audience, and Hulu has continued to build out its own Spanish-language programming.

Image courtesy of Flickr user Brian Cantoni.