ViacomCBS has just confirmed its next streaming service, but it didn't give us a name. In a press release early today (Feb. 20) prior to the company's financial earnings call, we learned this service will build upon CBS All Access, and it sounds a lot like rival NBCU's Peacock.
ViacomCBS aims to draw eyes to this new service, which it referred to as "House of Brands" (but that's not the name of the service) with its existing library of content. That includes programming from Viacom's cable channels, including BET, Comedy Central and Nickelodeon.
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We'd also expect more Star Trek programming, including Star Trek: Picard season 2.
How much live content the streaming service will carry has yet to be announced, but this untitled CBS service will definitely feature live news and sports. CBS All Access offers both already (as CBSN and CBS Sports HQ), but this new package will likely offer more to get people's attention.
On the earnings call that followed the announcement today, the folks at CBS hyped up Pluto TV, the existing ad-supported free streaming platform that delivers repackaged content from the likes of CNN, MTV, The Movie Channel and Spike TV. Pluto will seemingly play a role in the new unnamed service, but, again, details were sparse.
If you're frustrated by the lack of detail, we are too. In its press release (opens in new tab), ViacomCBS referred to the service with the following:
"New broad pay 'House of Brands' product will expand CBS All Access by adding the company’s scaled assets in film and TV, including world-renowned brands, and reaffirm and expand the value of entertainment, news and sports – through on-demand and live experiences – for audiences around the world.
All this leaves a lot in the air. Wondering what the new service will cost? So are we. CBS currently has 3 existing price tiers:
- Free: Pluto
- $5.99 per month: CBS All Access (with ads)
- $9.99 per month: CBS All Access (without ads)
Because the new service is meant to build upon CBS All Access, it's not hard to imagine it might cost more. However, NBCU's Peacock starts at $5 per month and has a $10 ad-free option, so ViacomCBS might find it hard to set prices north of that.
We first heard rumors about this service earlier this month, and we can't wait for ViacomCBS to fill in the missing details.