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TVWeek, WSJ

CBS Launches Online Subscription Service

Oct 16, 2014  •  Post A Comment

CBS today announced the launch of a digital subscription video service that will cost consumers $5.99 a month and will offer current and classic CBS programs along with a live stream of the broadcast network.

CBS All Access, distributed via CBS.com and mobile apps, will feature more CBS programming than consumers can currently find online.

Along with full current seasons of 15 prime-time shows — with episodes becoming available on the new service 24 hours after they are aired on the broadcast channel — CBS All Access will offer full past seasons of eight major current series, including “The Good Wife,” “Blue Bloods” and “Survivor.”

At launch it will also include live streams of local CBS stations in 14 of the top markets, with more to be added later.

CBS Classics, which will be presented without commercials, will also be a part of the package — including more than 5,000 episodes of older shows. Among them are complete series such as “Star Trek,” “Twin Peaks,” “CSI: Miami” and “Cheers.”

Exclusive extra content will be a part of the deal, as will access to “Big Brother” 24/7 Live Feeds. However, “Thursday Night Football” and other NFL content will be excluded, due to the network’s agreement with the league.

In a statement announcing the launch, network President and CEO Leslie Moonves said: “CBS All Access is another key step in the company’s long-standing strategy of monetizing our local and national content in the ways that viewers want it. This new subscription service will deliver the most of CBS to our biggest fans while being additive to the overall ecosystem. Across the board, we continue to capitalize on technological advances that help consumers engage with our world-class programming, and we look forward to serving our viewers in this new and exciting way.”

The Wall Street Journal cites Marc DeBevoise, executive vice president of CBS Interactive, saying that when current programs air on CBS All Access following their initial broadcast on the network, the commercial load will be about 25% less than during the airing on the linear network.

Added DeBevoise: “No one has gone out there and put out a network branded product with the breadth and depth of CBS All Access.”

The WSJ report notes: “Mr. DeBevoise didn’t rule out eventually creating original content for the platform.”

The CBS move comes on the heels of a landmark announcement Wednesday by HBO that it is planning a stand-alone streaming service.

Please click here to read the full announcement of the CBS All Access launch from the network.

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5 Comments

  1. Will this subscription service carry any advertising?

  2. Chuck, in my estimation the one and only reason that CBS is doing this, is so that you cannot skip the advertising. I believe this with every bone in my body. If you notice It said that there will be no advertising on the classic site, but didn’t mention the main site. Do you use the VOD system on any networks ?can’t skip any ads, and some of it you can’t even mute. I’ll never sign up for it.

  3. I wonder if the service will be better than their CBS APP, which seems to, at times, constantly buffer.

  4. I have a home theater PC and time shift several over-the-air broadcast shows for later viewing because they conflict with other shows that our family watches. Sometimes, due to an occasional technical glitch, those shows don’t get recorded. Typically, we would watch those missed shows on the network’s website the next day. However, over the past few weeks/months, we have found that many shows are no longer available to watch the until the following week or longer, or are only available if you have a cable/satellite subscription.

    I’m already taking a hit on the quality of the visual experience by viewing these shows online, not to mention the incessant buffing and glitching that typically occurs (oddly enough) during commercials… commercials that can’t be fast forwarded or skipped to get past the problem.

    So… I’m not paying CBS, or any other network, a penny to watch over-the-air shows online. If I can’t view them online for free like I do over the air, then screw ’em. I’m fully prepared and ready to stop watching them altogether. So here’s a big, fat middle finger to them.

    To TV show sponsors and advertisers, it’s obvious the networks can’t be bothered to make it any more convenient for me to allow them (and their sponsors) the privilege to present their shows in my home.

  5. Will this have their late night shows? If Colbert is not widely online somewhere when he takes over the Late Show, there will be huge backlash.

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