CBS CEO hints a DirecTV Now deal will probably happen

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Add CBS to the list of broadcasters ready to sign a deal for Apple TV
You won't find CBS on DirecTV Now.
Photo: Buster Hein/Cult of Mac

The biggest hole in DirecTV Now’s lineup may finally get filled by CBS, but it’s going to take awhile.

CBS CEO Les Moonves said today he’s confident his company will be able to make a deal with AT&T’s DirecTV Now service. However, CBS may delay and wait for a better deal.

“I’m assuming we’ll be able to make a deal with them,” Moonves told attendees at the UBS Global Media and Communications Conference. “As they said in The Godfather, ‘We are not unreasonable people here.'”

DirecTV Now, a new streaming service offered by AT&T, launched last month with a free Apple TV offer. Customers can currently stream up to 80 channels for $35 a month. Moonves hinted that pricing may need to change before CBS jumps on board.

“[DirecTV Now] is obviously something they’re going to lose money on initially,” said Moonves. “There’s no way it can last a whole long time at $35 for 80 channels.”

CBS-owned Showtime is also not a part of DirecTV Now’s bundles. That could be because the company views the $5 HBO and Cinemax passes as too cheap.

Moonves’ company also negotiated with Apple regarding Cupertino’s potential streaming TV service that never got off the ground. At one point, the CBS CEO said he would probably sign the Apple TV deal, but the talks didn’t go anywhere.