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Showtime Stand-alone Offering Will “Fairly Definitively” Be Seen in 2015, Says CEO

Showtime Stand-alone Offering Will "Fairly Definitively" Be Seen in 2015, Says CEO

“RT @CNBCnow: ALERT: CBS CEO Les Moonves says will “fairly definitively” see stand-alone Showtime offering in 2015.”

The above tweet, posted just minutes ago, comes a couple of weeks after both HBO and CBS announced definite plans to launch standalone online streaming services for those non-cable TV subscribers. At the time, some of you asked whether CBS’ offer would also include its other properties, specifically, Showtime (in case you weren’t already aware, CBS Corp owns Showtime Networks, its flagship premium cable TV channel). 

The answer to that question is, “fairly definitively,” which I’ll just take as a “yes.”

No word on terms, like how much it would cost.

CBS chief Moonves did previously say that an all-access CBS network (not including Showtime) stand-alone service would include a live stream of the network, full current seasons of prime-time shows, and a catalog of classic sitcoms and dramas, all at a cost of $5.99 per month.

Essentially, you’ll be able to watch CBS live, on whatever web-enabled device you prefer, without a cable TV subscription, or bothering with an antenna for your TV. And you’ll have access to current and past seasons of its shows to watch whenever you want. 

I assume a Showtime stand-alone service would offer the same, although I’d guess likely at a slightly higher cost.

And viewership will be counted by Nielsen, the same way it is on TV, according to Moonves. 

Details on HBO’s planned streaming service (notably price), aren’t yet available, but, as I said in the post announcing it, moves like these are all steps towards an à la carte pricing model that many of us have hoped we would see in the near future. Instead of paying $60 to $150+ for cable TV service that includes hundreds of channels you don’t, and will likely never watch, you’ll get to pick the handful that you do want, and pay for the lot. Although, depending on how many you do select, your monthly fee could add up rather quickly, and then you’ll find yourself paying what you’d typically pay for cable TV anyway.

As for how cable TV and satellite providers might react to these moves (I can only imagine that other networks will follow) – Moonves doesn’t seem concerned, previously stating, “every media company in America is thinking about direct-to-consumer, mobile, digital,” adding that, cable and satellite providers are mostly mixed about these new developments: “Some understand it and like it because, by the way, one of the things we are stressing is that [providers] can be part of it.”

Content is king, and he who owns the content, is king.

“You don’t want to be beholden to anybody,” Moonves added. “You don’t know where the world’s going to go.” 

So who’s next?

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