Streaming will play an ever-growing role at CBS. Executives provided details about the network’s new streaming strategy to Wall Street yesterday.
CBS chose to approach streaming in a different way. Rather than joining existing internet TV providers like Sling TV, CBS created its own streaming platform. The CBS News Network is a free, ad-supported service. Showtime lets cord-cutters subscribe to the premium TV network.
CBS All Access lets anyone get the network’s content, including The Good Fight and Star Trek: Discovery for a low monthly fee. CBS plans to open All Access to Canada, Australia, and Europe this year.
“The CBS Corporation produces many of the most valuable programming franchises in the world,” CEO Les Moonves explained in a press release, adding that “we now have nearly five million subscribers at CBS All Access and Showtime OTT combined.”
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Moonves provided more details on a conference call with financial analysts yesterday. A CBS-branded streaming sports service will launch in time for the NCAA Basketball Tournament. Another streaming service built on the company’s Entertainment Tonight franchise will land towards the end of the year.
The LA Times reported that the entertainment service will be free and ad-supported, quoting Moonves as saying on the call, “There is a tremendous appetite in the marketplace for entertainment news.”
Developing its own streaming services lets CBS reach a younger audience than its traditional broadcast operations. Reports this week indicate that NBC is learning this same lesson from its streaming Olympic coverage. Combine that with Disney/ABC’s plans for an home-grown streaming service and you get even more options for cord-cutters.