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AT&T Gears Up for Battle as Program Deals Come Up

AT&T, fresh off its acquisition of Time Warner, is gearing up for what could be a series of bloody battles with rival media giants, as it seeks to cut programming costs at its DirecTV satellite and streaming video division. The outcome could affect the shape of the TV industry for years to come.

Several major media companies, including Fox, CBS and Viacom, have programming agreements with DirecTV coming up for renewal in the next 12 to 18 months, people familiar with the situation told The Information. DirecTV has already begun talking with Fox, owner of Fox News, FX and National Geographic channels, whose deal is up by the end of the year, said two of the people.

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