Paramount+ (pronounced Paramount Plus) is an American-owned global subscription video on-demand over-the-top streaming service owned and operated by ViacomCBS Streaming, a division of ViacomCBS. It offers original content, including newly aired CBS broadcast properties, and content from the ViacomCBS library. In the United States, many markets offer a live stream of the local CBS affiliate's main channel.
Type of site
|OTT video streaming platform|
|Available in||English, Spanish and Portuguese|
|Predecessor(s)||CBS All Access|
|Headquarters||New York City, |
|Registration||Monthly subscription required to access content|
|Users||36 million (as of May 6, 2021) (Combined total of all ViacomCBS streaming services)|
|Launched||October 28, 2014|
(as CBS All Access)
March 4, 2021
Originally launched as CBS All Access on October 28, 2014 (10 All Access in Australia), the service was rebranded as Paramount+ on March 4, 2021, following the 2019 re-merger of CBS and Viacom. Paramount+ would also expand to international markets, starting with Latin America and the already existing Canadian service on the day of the service's rebranding, followed by the Nordic countries on March 25, and Australia on August 11.
Beginnings as CBS All Access
CBS All Access was launched on October 28, 2014, priced at US$5.99 per month with advertising and $9.99 per month without. Announced on October 16, 2014, as the first over-the-top (OTT) offering by an American broadcast television network, the service initially encompassed the network's existing streaming portal at CBS.com and its mobile app for smartphones and tablet computers; CBS All Access became available on Roku on April 7, 2015, and on Chromecast on May 14, 2015. In addition to providing full-length episodes of past and present of CBS programs, the service allows live programming streams of local CBS affiliates in 194 markets reaching 92% of the United States (including stations owned by Sinclair Broadcast Group, Hearst Television, Tegna Media, Nexstar Media Group, Meredith Corporation, Griffin Communications, Gray Television, Weigel Broadcasting and Cox Media Group and the launch group of CBS Television Stations), including SEC sports and the NFL; however due to the absence of streaming rights, a few sports events are not streamed on the service (mainly involving PGA Tour events, some locally programmed NFL preseason games, and select brokered shows through CBS Sports Spectacular), along with limited syndicated and paid programming where only a local broadcast license to carry the program is allowed and web airing rights are retained by the syndicator or infomercial producer. By the very nature of its being live, streaming of a local affiliate does include all advertising, even with the commercial-free plan.
On December 1, 2016, CBS announced an agreement with the NFL to allow clearance of regional NFL games carried by CBS on CBS All Access from Week 13 of the 2016 NFL season on. At the time, the games were blacked out on non–Verizon Wireless mobile devices due to that provider's exclusivity agreement as part of their "official wireless provider" sponsorship of the league. In the 2018 NFL season, a new agreement with Verizon ending that exclusivity began to allow CBS All Access to stream games to all mobile devices; Super Bowl games run on CBS All Access without the need for any authentication.
As of February 2017, the service had nearly 1.5 million subscribers. In August of the same year, CBS unveiled plans to expand CBS All Access to markets outside the United States. Canada was announced as the first international market to receive the service. Plans to launch in Australia quickly followed, resulting from CBS's purchase of free-to-air broadcaster Network 10.
In September 2017, Star Trek: Discovery debuted on streaming on CBS, and they also recorded a record number of sign-ups after this. The records were the greatest number of single day, week, and monthly sign-up records since the streaming network's inception. They reported the previous single-day record was held by the 2017 Grammy award ceremony coverage. CBS was noted as harnessing the Star Trek fanbase which was willing to get the service just to see the series.
Buoyed by Star Trek: Discovery, CBS All Access reached over 2 million subscribers by early 2018. The 60th Annual Grammy Awards also provided a boost to sign-ups, marking the second largest day for new subscriptions after the Discovery premiere. In April 2018, CBS All Access was made available outside the United States for the first time when it was launched in Canada.
The service launched in Australia in December 2018 as 10 All Access. It operates alongside 10's free catch up and live streaming service 10 Play and contains a mixture of Network 10 and CBS programming. CBS shows are made available on All Access prior to being broadcast on 10's channels. 10 All Access is commercial-free and, unlike CBS All Access, has only one pricing tier.
In January 2019, CBS reported its largest increase in subscribers over a weekend—a 72% increase over the premiere of Discovery, crediting the premiere of season 2 of the series and that week's AFC Championship Game (which also brought the service its largest streaming audience for a football game). Super Bowl LIII would surpass this record only a few weeks later, with CBS reporting an 84% increase in new subscribers.
Re-merger of CBS and Viacom
On November 25, 2019, as part of the re-merger between CBS Corporation and Viacom, CBS All Access announced the inclusion of programming from Nickelodeon, as part of the wider launch of children's programming on the service, with other partners including Boat Rocker Studios and WildBrain.
In January 2020, CBS All Access became available on the Xfinity Flex platform, followed by the X1 platform in December.
On February 6, 2020, CNBC reported that ViacomCBS was in discussions to launch a larger premium streaming offering, combining CBS All Access with content from Paramount Pictures, the Domestic Media Networks division, and Pluto TV. The service would include an ad-free tier, and a premium tier that includes Showtime's streaming service. The company would maintain its existing streaming platforms, while marketing the new service to users of these other services. ViacomCBS partially outlined these plans in a corporate earnings call on February 20, 2020, stating that the expanded All Access service would take a "house of brands" approach to content and serve as a mid-tier offering complementing Pluto TV (which would remain a free service) and the Showtime OTT service by "adding a broad pay offering, built on [All Access's] foundation." The expanded service will include content from MTV, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, BET, and Smithsonian Channel, as well as a library of 30,000 television series episodes and up to 1,000 film titles from Paramount's film and television divisions and CBS Media Ventures, and expanded live news and sports offerings. No pricing plan or firm dates for content expansion were disclosed, though a "soft [re]launch" will occur later in 2020. ViacomCBS will also continue to license its TV and film content to competing streaming platforms.
On May 7, 2020, CBS All Access began adding more films to the service, starting with more than 100 from Paramount Pictures, and ViacomCBS announced that CBS All Access will expand internationally within twelve months. On July 30, 2020, CBS All Access added several shows from ViacomCBS Domestic Media Networks, introduced a new user interface with "hubs" for different brands, and revealed that Kamp Koral: SpongeBob's Under Years (previously planned to air on Nickelodeon) would debut on the service in 2021. With the expansion, it was also announced that the service would rebrand in early-2021 to separate itself from CBS's platforms, and that there were plans to add multiple user profiles and parental controls later in 2020.
Relaunch as Paramount+
On September 15, 2020, it was announced that CBS All Access would rebrand as Paramount+ in 2021, and that it planned to perform more international expansion under the new name. ViacomCBS CEO Bob Bakish stated Paramount was "an iconic and storied brand beloved by consumers all over the world, and it is synonymous with quality, integrity and world-class storytelling". Several new series were also announced for the service, including true crime series The Real Criminal Minds, MTV's Behind the Music – The Top 40, a revival of the BET series The Game, Taylor Sheridan's Lioness, and The Offer — a drama based on Albert S. Ruddy's experiences filming The Godfather.
On January 19, 2021, it was announced that Paramount+ would launch on March 4, with information being released on February 24 during an investor event. The company announced that no updates will be provided for apps on second or third generation Apple TV once the service relaunches. ViacomCBS announced during their investor event on February 24 that Paramount+ would premiere new 2021 theatrical releases from Paramount Pictures (such as A Quiet Place Part II, Top Gun: Maverick, and PAW Patrol: The Movie) 45 days after their theatrical release, while other future theatrical releases from Paramount would premiere on the service either after their theatrical run or after their run on Epix (which reached a new deal with ViacomCBS that same day to provide content for Paramount+, allowing recent releases from Paramount to be available on the service among other titles).
|Over 100,000||Early 2015|
|Around 1.2 million||December 2016|
|Nearly 1.5 million||February 2017|
|Over 2 million||Early 2018|
|2.5 million||August 2018|
|4 million||February 2019|
|Around 8 million||December 2020|
In 2021, the company ViacomCBS issued a press release that revealed the combined number of subscribers to both CBS All Access and Showtime (another streaming product). That press release revealed that the two streaming services had a combined 19.2 million US subscribers, though the release did not provide individual numbers for either service. In May 2021, ViacomCBS reported to have gained 6 million subscribers during the first quarter of 2021. This brought the total number of global subscribers for ViacomCBS streaming platforms (Paramount+, Showtime, BET+) to 36 million. Out of the 36 million subscribers, a majority of these subscribers are subscribed to Paramount+; however, the exact number of subscribers has not been released.
On November 2, 2015, it was announced that the first CBS All Access original series would be a new Star Trek series in 2017, which is set in the original Star Trek universe. The first season of Star Trek: Discovery consisted of 15 episodes.
On May 18, 2016, it was announced that The Good Wife would get a spin-off featuring Christine Baranski's character Diane Lockhart. The series, titled The Good Fight, launched with a CBS broadcast premiere on February 19, 2017, with the remaining nine episodes exclusive to CBS All Access. The series became the first original drama on the platform when the Star Trek series premiere was delayed until the fall of 2017.
On August 2, 2016, the announcement was made that an online version of Big Brother would air on CBS All Access in the fall of 2016. The announcement marked the first CBS television series set to air exclusively on the platform. It is also expected to be the first reality game show set to air exclusively on any streaming platform. On August 10, 2016, CBS announced that Julie Chen Moonves would continue to serve as host, and then revealed the season to be called Big Brother: Over the Top.
In February 2019, CBS All Access announced they were planning a show based on the Star Trek: The Next Generation character Captain Jean-Luc Picard, to air before the end of the year. The series was later announced as Star Trek: Picard, and premiered on January 23, 2020. Other original shows in development included a project with Michelle Yeoh, as well as the continuation of existing shows such as Star Trek: Discovery, The Good Fight, and The Twilight Zone.
As part of CBS All Access's expansion, The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run and Kamp Koral: SpongeBob's Under Years will debut on the service in 2021. On January 28, 2021, it was announced that Sponge on the Run and Kamp Koral will launch when the service rebrands on March 4, 2021. Sponge on the Run will also be available to rent on demand on the same day.
The Halo television series, based on the Xbox video game franchise, will be a Paramount+ exclusive premiering in the first quarter of 2022 as announced during a ViacomCBS streaming event on February 25, 2021. ViacomCBS also announced that Paramount+ would house new content based on several classic properties, including Flashdance, Frasier, iCarly, Beavis and Butt-Head, Reno 911!, and more.
Paramount+ also carries sports programming, in conjunction with CBS Sports. In November 2019, CBS announced that it had acquired streaming rights in the United States to the UEFA Champions League and Europa League in European soccer, replacing Turner Sports. All matches will stream on the service, with selected matches on the broadcast network and CBS Sports Network. The contract was initially to begin in the 2021-22 season and last through 2023-24. However, during a suspension of the 2019–20 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Europe, existing rightsholder Turner Sports opted out of its contract, and CBS took over the rights early for its remaining seasons.
The service has picked up other domestic and international soccer events as well, including the National Women's Soccer League (NWSL), CONCACAF Nations League, Women's Nations League, and 2022 CONCACAF Women's Championship, the Argentine Primera División, Brazilian Série A, and Italy's Serie A. As part of the NFL's rights renewal with CBS, Paramount+ gains expanded rights to stream games on both its premium and ad-supported tiers between 2021 and 2033.
Syndicated and archived programming
The most recent episodes of CBS's shows are usually made available on CBS.com and Paramount+ the day after their original broadcast.
Paramount+ provides complete back catalogs of most of its current series, including full-season "stacking rights" (with the exception of certain series, such as The Big Bang Theory, which CBS held only "last five" episode rights during its original run, as Warner Bros. retains all other rights as the show's distributor), as well as a wide selection of episodes of classic series from the CBS Media Ventures program library – including shows previously owned by the original Paramount Television made for both CBS and other networks prior to CBS's acquisition of its program library through the CBS-Viacom split (including the complete episode catalog of shows like Star Trek, Cheers, MacGyver, Twin Peaks and CSI: Miami) to subscribers of the service. Paramount+ also carries behind-the-scenes features from CBS programs and special events, and (beginning with the 17th season in June 2015) live feeds and special content from the reality series Big Brother.
In mid-April 2017, a limited library of films, made up of content from Paramount Pictures, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Sony Pictures, The Samuel Goldwyn Company and CBS Films, was made available on the service. This includes several titles in the Star Trek film series. On May 7, 2020, CBS All Access added more than 100 films from Paramount Pictures; more films were added in the coming months.
In August 2019, CBS All Access expanded into children's broadcasting by acquiring the U.S. broadcast rights to Danger Mouse (1981) (as well as the reboot of the series), Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, and several other series from WildBrain including Inspector Gadget (and Inspector Gadget's Field Trip), Bob the Builder (original and reboot), Polly Pocket and others. The service will soon offer the first twenty-one seasons of Thomas & Friends and related movies, with the exception of Big World! Big Adventures!, three seasons related to the movie, and the relaunch of Thomas and Friends: All Engines Go! owned by Netflix. On July 30, 2020, CBS All Access added 56 shows from ViacomCBS Domestic Media Networks.
CBS All Access was first launched in the United States on October 28, 2014. The service would receive its first International expansion on April 23, 2018, when CBS All Access expanded to Canada. Australia received its own version of the service, named 10 All Access, on December 4, 2018.
In August 2020, ViacomCBS announced plans to launch an expanded international streaming service using the CBS All Access technical architecture, but under the new Paramount+ name (revealed in September) in 2021; the Paramount+ name would also be applied to the American replacement to CBS All Access. The service features original programming from CBS All Access as well as Showtime, plus additional programming including Paramount Pictures films which may vary by market. The service would initially launch in the Nordics and Latin America, replacing an existing service of the same name, with additional markets to follow. In Australia, while the relaunched service will premiere all new Showtime original programs going forward, currently-airing series will remain on Stan until their conclusion under an existing deal.
The Paramount+ brand itself was originated as a subscription video on demand film service, first launching in the Nordics in 2017, and then in Poland, Hungary, Latin America, and Russia in the following three years. The current iteration of Paramount+ in the Nordics and Latin America was preceded by this service.
Paramount+ is currently available in Australia (as 10 All Access), Canada, Latin America, Middle East (as a pay TV channel), Nordics, and United States. Additionally, the Paramount+ SVOD service is still active in Poland (as Paramount Play), Hungary, and Russia (as Okko Paramount+), though the current streaming service is unavailable in said regions. Due to program rights and existing content deals, several programs are not available on local versions, or have delayed availability for new episodes. For example, Star Trek: Discovery and other shows from the franchise are licensed to Bell Media in Canada for their CTV Sci-Fi (in English) and Z (in French) channels and streaming service Crave. Another example, Kamp Koral: SpongeBob's Under Years, iCarly, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and all Paramount+ original kids and family programming are licensed to Corus Entertainment for their YTV and Treehouse networks in 2021, in-part due to pre-existing agreements between Corus and ViacomCBS.
A localized version of Paramount+ operates in the Middle East as a premium offering on pay-TV provider OSN, replacing the now-defunct Paramount Channel. It features content from the aforementioned channel, as well as Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and MTV.
|Release date||Country/Territory||Release partner(s)|
|October 28, 2014||United States|
|April 23, 2018||Canada|
|December 4, 2018||Australia|
|March 4, 2021||Argentina|
|March 25, 2021||Denmark|
|Early 2022||United Kingdom|
- Pluto TV
- as CBS All Access
- as 10 All Access
- preceded by the SVOD service of the same name
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