ViacomCBS has updated investors on its differentiated streaming strategy. It envisages leveraging Pluto TV and Showtime OTT to create a linked ecosystem with Paramount+, due to launch in the US, Canada and 18 Latin American countries on March 4.
Paramount+ will feature a combination of live sports, breaking news and entertainment from ViacomCBS’ portfolio of brands and production studios, including BET, CBS, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, Paramount Pictures and the Smithsonian Channel.
It will include over 50 exclusive original series across scripted dramas, kids and family, reality, comedy, music, sports, news and documentaries that are set to premiere on the service in the next two years, including 36 in 2021. These originals will join a content catalogue of more than 30,000 episodes and 2,500 movie titles. In addition, pricing tiers, leading launch sponsors and international rollout plans were announced by the company.
Bob Bakish, president and CEO, ViacomCBS, said: “In today’s entertainment landscape, ViacomCBS stands apart as the only media company to fully embrace every segment of the streaming universe across free, premium and pay.
“The launch of Paramount+ supercharges our strategy with a broad pay service that will be home to everything consumers love, all in one place: live sports, breaking news and a mountain of entertainment, at scale. As we look ahead, ViacomCBS is ideally positioned to harness the full power of our assets and capabilities – from our world-class production studios and the value of our massive content library, to our global marketing platform and local relationships – to seize the global opportunity in streaming”.
Tom Ryan, president and CEO, ViacomCBS Streaming, added “Built from an iconic portfolio of beloved consumer brands and iconic franchises like SpongeBob and Star Trek, Paramount+ is a compelling and differentiated streaming offering for all audiences. In combination with Pluto TV and Showtime, the service will further strengthen our robust linked streaming ecosystem, giving us a critical competitive advantage as we pursue our goal of reaching consumers across every platform, at every price point, with creativity, content and experiences that are second to none”.
Following its debut on March 4, Paramount+ will launch in the Nordics on March 25and Australia with a rebrand and expansion of 10 All Access later this year, with additional markets to follow.
Paramount+ will have two pricing tiers available to US subscribers that marry the best of live and on-demand programming.
The premium tier, at $9.99, will be available with the full depth and breadth of live sports, around-the-clock news programming and world-class entertainment spanning Paramount+ originals to an expansive suite of current and library shows and movies. The offering will include CBS’ live linear feed and commercial-free on demand viewing, with 4K, HDR and Dolby Vision, mobile downloads and cross-platform dynamic play functionality.
An ad-supported tier will launch in June for $4.99 and offer the best in sports, news and entertainment. At that time, the current $5.99 plan will no longer be available for new users, but existing users will maintain grandfathered access. The ad-supported tier will feature an offering of Paramount+ originals, marquee sports content including live championship-level soccer and live NFL games, breaking news through CBSN and a collection of content, including the full suite of current and library CBS shows available on demand.
Both Paramount+ tiers will feature a seamless user interface, enhanced curation and discovery, personalised homepages, content categories and central hubs for ViacomCBS’ brands. Additionally, each subscription option will include parental control capabilities and up to six individual profiles.
At launch, Paramount+ will be available online at ParamountPlus.com, via the Paramount+ app for iOS and Android, and across a wide number of platforms, including smart TVs, connected-TV devices, online, mobile, gaming consoles, and leading OTT providers.