This summer, CBS All Access will officially make the switch and become Paramount+. The rebranding will come with more than a name change, as the newly bulked-up streaming platform will also come with a cheaper subscription price. But like all good things, it comes with a catch.
This summer, when ViacomCBS rebrands its streaming platform CBS All Access to Paramount+, it will be reducing the base, ad-supported tier by one dollar — charging $4.99 per month for Paramount+ compared to the current entry level-level CBS All Access package with commercials, Variety reports. The full Paramount+ premium tier with no ads (except live programming) will be the same, at $9.99 per month.
But there’s an important caveat that comes with that dollar Paramount+ subscribers will save: while the $5 monthly plan for Paramount+ will include live sports including NFL games, it won’t include local CBS stations. It doesn’t sound like a huge loss, but let’s face it, that might be a blow for the generally older CBS demographic.
But worry not, current CBS All Access lower-tier subscribers: while the previous $5.99 per month plan will be discontinued in June, ViacomCBS said existing subscribers will not be affected (unless they cancel and resubscribe after the new Paramount+ plan is introduced).
But, perhaps in a move to appeal to the younger crowd, the Paramount+ $5 tier will have “way more content than CBS All Access had,” Tom Ryan, CEO of ViacomCBS Streaming division, told analysts. This new plan is priced to maximize consumer appeal, and by eliminating CBS locals from that package, ViacomCBS has more flexibility in how it structures distribution deals, Ryan added.
It kind of makes sense: the whole Paramount+ rebrand is clearly ViacomCBS’ attempt to reach out to a younger, wider audience, versus the older demographic that CBS typically appeals to. Younger viewers rarely purchase live TV packages now, preferring to subscribe to various streaming services, and Paramount+ wants to compete with other major streamers like Disney+ and Netflix. The company also plans to bundle Paramount+ with other streaming packages, allowing subscribers to purchase a Showtime add-on with Paramount+.
It’s a pretty tempting price for a relatively new streaming platform — the Paramount+ price is cheaper than Disney+’s famously affordable $6.99 a month, but is probably more comparable to Hulu’s ad-supported $5.99 a month. But while it’s the most affordable new streaming platform with ads, it’s now a question of whether the deluge of new reboots, TV shows, and movies will be worth the money. We’ll have to see.
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