Posted in Opinion, Tech

The New TV

Congratulations everyone, we did it! We’ve managed to move TV from this horribly managed service that we have to buy from a select few options of providers to multiple options from multiple high profile providers.

In the middle of the revolution, we also found something new. The streaming giant Netflix decided to produce their own show. For most people, the subscription to Netflix already existed so this was just icing on the cake, but it did draw in additional subscribers to see what all their friends were talking about. Hulu quickly followed suit, creating their own original series attracting a lot of attention to the two streaming giants.

Following the success of this something new happened. CBS announced their new streaming service CBS All Access. This service offered subscribers access to current and back catalog episodes and shows. This service was different from what we saw from Hulu and Netflix. It only involved CBS programming where the prior had agreements with multiple networks. It also offered live streaming of your local CBS channel. This was met with a lot doubt due to the limited scope. What CBS did to counter this was also questionable at the time – they launched an original Star Trek series exclusively to the network. This turned out to be a no-brainer. Take your biggest asset, lock it behind a pay fence and profit.

Unfortunately, the world was watching. In the past year since the launch of CBS All Access both Disney and DC have announced their own streaming services. Disney has announced their unnamed streaming service which will launch in 2019 with the end of their agreement with Netflix for streaming their product. DC has announced DC Universe which will be a streaming service mixed with a comic book collection subscription service. Both are using the CBS playbook to anchor their service. Disney will be bringing back the Clone Wars animated series exclusively to their unnamed streaming service and DC has Doubled down on Dick Grayson bringing the new live action series Titans (based on the Teen Titans characters) and Young Justice season 3.

The migration of distribution feels like a double edged sword to me. On the one hand, this is really great for getting things we want but haven’t been able to convince networks that they should carry. I know there have been plenty of fans who wanted to see more of the Clone Wars series. As for Young Justice, I know personally there’s been a huge calling for the story to continue and a live action Teen Titans themed show feels like a no brainer. Unfortunately, I also realize that there’s going to be a $5.00 – $10.00 monthly ticket associated with each of these streaming services. Assuming Disney’s unnamed service falls in around the $8.00 per month area, you’re going to spend just shy of $40 a month to carry all of this programming and that is assuming you don’t pick up any of the commercial free options that are available – that brings it up to just shy of $50.

I can tell you with full faith and certainty that I’m going to subscribe to all of these services. I’m already subscribed to the ones that are available. I loved the exclusive Star Trek series and watching CBS shows without commercials makes it just a bit more relaxing. Hulu commercial free falls under the same category for me. I tend to not watch shows when they air so being able to quickly catch up feels really good. I am also the parent of a 3 year old who is enthralled with Disney products, so when they pull all their stuff and lock it behind a gate, I’ll be standing first in line to get my child in. As a self proclaimed comic character fanboy, I can tell you I have been waiting years for a subscription service to DC comics. The video streaming option is just icing on the cake for me.

In the end, all I can say is my poor bank account. Anyone else feel like they’re going to have  to sign over their paycheck for streaming services? Let me know in the comments.