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A Fully Combined SHOWTIME, Paramount+ Service Is Coming, but Likely Not Anytime Soon

David Satin

Cord cutters who love the premium programming offered by SHOWTIME will have to wait a little longer for the service to be merged with Paramount+. While reports circulated earlier this month that Paramount Global was looking to finally merge its premium cable channel’s streamer with its flagship service, last week Paramount CEO Bob Bakish said thatthe company would be keeping both streaming services as standalone entities for the time being, though he did confirm that conversations regarding a merger had taken place.

The media report that you referred to is a rumor coming out of one of our distribution conversations that quite frankly if we weren’t having that conversation, you should fire all of us because we should have that conversation,” Bakish said at the Goldman Sachs Communacopia + Technology Conference. “It’s not like we’ve made a decision that we’re going to do something on such and such a date. But I guarantee you, media will continue to evolve; I guarantee you our product line will continue to evolve, it will get better. And I guarantee you, we will continue to work with distributors and provide value to them such that they benefit.”

Paramount has already taken steps to make SHOWTIME content available via Paramount+ as last month, the company finally launched an in-app bundle to give Showtime programming its own hub inside Paramount+. Key to this move according to Bakish was the streamlining of the customer experience; instead of forcing subscribers to switch back and forth between apps, all of the series and movies available from both services are easily accessible within one streamer. This also gives customers a potential preview of what a merged streaming platform might look like.

But reporting from Forbes demonstrates why Paramount isn’t rushing to consolidate its two streaming platforms just yet. For one thing, the company will likely have to go to every linear TV provider that carries Showtime and renegotiate its carriage deals with them because of the change in distribution strategy. This process will undoubtedly take a lot of time and effort.

Another stumbling block to a fast launch of a merged SHOWTIME-Paramount+ app is the money from potential subscribers. A single streaming service will almost certainly come in at a higher price point than the $4.99 per month that Paramount charges for its ad-supported Essential Paramount+ subscription. The company likely wants to see Warner Bros. Discovery launch its combined HBO Max/discovery+ service first, to see how customers respond to a higher price for more content.

Currently, discovery+’s Ad-Lite tier also runs $4.99 monthly while HBO Max’s cheapest plan is $9.99 per month. Finding the right pricing balance to keep customers currently subscribed to the cheaper service when the price for the combined streamer inevitably rises.

Finally, Paramount simply doesn’t need to rush the merger of its streaming services right now. It stands to gain a large number of subscribers as its deal to include access to Paramount+ with every Walmart+ subscription kicks in. “Top Gun: Maverick” will also be hitting Paramount+ before the end of 2022, and will likely bring a nice subscription boost with it.

A combined SHOWTIME-Paramount+ service is absolutely on its way, but the company is not feeling the need for speed as of now.

  • Paramount Plus

    Paramount+ is a subscription video streaming service that includes on-demand access to 40,000+ TV show episodes from BET, CBS, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, Nick Jr. and more. The lineup includes “1883,” “Tulsa King,” “Star Trek: Discovery,” Nickelodeon’s “SpongeBob SquarePants,” and MTV’s “Laguna Beach.” From well-loved franchises to compelling originals, Paramount+ offers a great library worth streaming. Live NFL games are included. The service also offers the option to watch your live CBS affiliate.

    Subscribers can choose between the Essentials Plan (which includes ads) for $4.99/month, or go commercial-free with the Premium Plan for $9.99/month. Subscribers can add Showtime to either plan for an additional fee.

    With their Premium Plan, in addition to not having ads, you will also get access to your local CBS affiliate to stream your local news, prime-time lineup, and late-night. You will also be able to download offline and watch select shows in 4K.

    With the lower cost “Essential” plan, you will still be able to watch live NFL games, Champions League, and national news – but you will no longer get your local CBS affiliate.

    With their new app, enjoy advanced recommendations, curated homepages, and new content categories while still being able to stream major live sports like NFL, College Football, College Basketball. Sports fans will also appreciate the service’s inclusion of NFL on CBS, PGA Tour, along with every match of UEFA Champions League and Serie A.

    The service was previously called CBS All Access.

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  • SHOWTIME

    SHOWTIME offers a subscription video streaming service that gives access to content on Showtime without the need of a cable subscription. With your subscription, you’ll get access to all of their current originals like Yellowjackets, Billions, and American Gigolo. If you choose to bundle Showtime with Paramount+, you can get both services for $7.99/month (with ads) or $12.99/month (ad-free).

    With your subscription, you’ll also get access to their critically acclaimed catalog of previous shows like Shameless, Homeland, Ray Donovan, Dexter, Weeds, Nurse Jackie, House of Lies, Californication, Queer as Folk, and The L Word.

    SHOWTIME also has new-release films from CBS Films, Amblin Partners, and IFC Films, which appear on the streaming service 7-8 months after they are in theaters. Every month they also have hundreds of additional older movies from major movie studios.

    You can subscribe for $10.99 a month either directly from SHOWTIME, or through Amazon Prime Video Channels, Apple TV Channels, or Roku Premium Subscriptions.

    30-Day Trial

    Get 3 Months of Showtime For Just $3.99/Mo. (normally $10.99), After 30-Day Free Trial

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