HBO is not the only premium cable channel interested in launching a streaming service. Showtime could soon join the game too — meaning there would be one more place for cord-cutters to access content, but also one more bill to pay.
Les Moonves, president and CEO of Showtime’s parent company CBS, told an investor conference Wednesday (March 11) that a standalone Showtime streaming service would likely come into being “in the not too distant future.” His comments come on the heels of HBO announcing its HBO Now service would launch in April.
Moonves praises HBO Now, calling it a “major positive for premium cable” — i.e., it opens up another potential base of subscribers, which means another revenue stream. So if you’re cutting the cord, how much would it cost you?
Let’s assume Showtime will charge the same as HBO Now for its streaming service, $14.99 per month. Let’s also assume you’re a TV omnivore, which means you want access to all the streaming services. Here’s how that would stack up each month:
*(monthly cost of a $99 yearly subscription)
You’ll need a good Internet connection to watch all that streaming content, which will run you at least $30 a month, depending on the provider. And if you also like, say, “The Walking Dead,” “Louie” and “Broad City” and want to watch live NBA or NFL games, a basic cable subscription at roughly $40 monthly is a must. Most ad-supported networks do offer streaming but require users to sign in via a cable or satellite provider, and live sports are still pretty much a TV-only experience.
The last item kind of kills the idea of “cord-cutting,” obviously, but at the moment there aren’t many (legal) ways around it that don’t involve waiting weeks or months for shows to stream on Netflix or Amazon. Even without a cable subscription, however, someone interested in only streaming their favorite shows is looking at an $85 monthly bill. That’s less than a cable-Internet bundle from most providers, but it’s not exactly cheap either.