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Paramount+ is CBS’ bid for international expansion
New offerings will test consumer appetite for subscription streaming services.

ViacomCBS recently unveiled a 2021 rebranding of CBS All Access to Paramount+, along with international expansion plans. By switching the focus to Hollywood studio Paramount, a 100-year-old brand, ViacomCBS says that it’s leveraging “a legacy of innovation and superior storytelling”, and it’s reinforcing that notion by adding new original programming about The Godfather. The Offer will be a scripted limited-event series based on Al Ruddy’s never-revealed experiences of making the iconic film franchise, the company noted. ViacomCBS will be adding more original content from CBS, BET, and MTV to complement live sports and breaking news. Leading up to the relaunch next year, CBS All Access intends to offer more than 30,000 TV episodes and movies.

An official rebrand and expansion into overseas markets could give CBS All Access a much-needed lift. Interpret data indicates that overall adoption of the streaming platform has slowed over the last year, with 5% of the US currently subscribing. Interpret’s New Media Measure® also shows that CBS All Access is more likely to be one of many streaming subscriptions for consumers rather than the one service consumers take. On average, CBS All Access users subscribe to 4 streaming services, a higher figure than for customers of most other streaming services. However, this figure also suggests that CBS All Access customers have a strong affinity for content, with a willingness to pay for four or more streaming services.

Over time, as the world of video streaming has become increasingly crowded, the average number of streaming services taken per US household has increased. Traditionally, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Hulu have been mainstays for consumers, with other services filling in the gaps or taken as supplements to the top three. However, the new generation of services, including HBO Max, Peacock, and now Paramount+ hope to change that, offering big libraries of first-run content along with new originals. Moving forward, consumers will either adopt more services, increasing the average number per household, or begin to trade off their favorites. One path means a bigger pie for all. The other means a new level of competition and an uncertain future for all of the services.

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