Paramount Plus Review
It was revealed in September 2020 that CBS All Access would be rebranding as Paramount Plus, a new streaming service designed to expand the number of movies and TV shows available for viewing on demand. There are also rumours that original projects are in the works. The service will be available in the US, Australia, Latin America and Nordic countries over the course of 2021. That said, the service has been described as global, so we expect that list is not exhaustive.
Pros and Cons
Expands the current content library with much more choice
Provides new genres such as live sports and news
Original content will provide intrigue for fans of Paramount
People may be confused by what happened to CBS All Access
The pricing may put people off if they don’t want another subscription
Some may prefer the lighter option of CBS All Access
Top Paramount+ shows and movies
There is some news about upcoming original projects which will be available on Paramount+. For example, there is set to be a miniseries called The Offer, comprising 10 episodes. This show will focus on how The Godfather was made.
Furthermore, plans for a reboot of some classic MTV content are on the horizon. Behind The Music is coming back in the form of The Top 40, and it will take a look at the 40 biggest music artists in history.
Those who enjoy true crime are in for a treat with a new series called The Real Criminal Minds. There will also be a reboot of The Game, a show known for appearing on BET. There will also be a new Spongebob Squarepants series called Kamp Koral for the kids, and a spy drama called Lioness from one of the writers and directors behind Yellowstone.
Plus fans cannot forget about the plans for the new miniseries called The Stand and the new Star Trek: Strange New Worlds series.
The content available on Paramount Plus will come from channels owned by the parent company, which include Nickelodeon, The Paramount Channel, Comedy Central, BET and MTV. There are also said to be movies from Paramount Pictures set to form part of the content offering. Plus, there will be titles from the existing CBS All Access library, with fan favorites such as Star Trek Discovery and The Twilight Zone reboot not forgotten about.
As part of their plans to expand with a larger streaming service, Paramount+ will also feature news and live sports. With the logo of Paramount being a mountain, the marketing for the content library has been described as ‘a mountain of entertainment’.
Most of the content on CBS All Access uses 1080p Full HD, which is not quite on par with streaming giants such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video – who provide plenty of content in 4K Ultra HD with HDR. The good news is that we can reasonably presume Paramount+ content to be in at least 1080p Full HD, like its predecessor. Many will have their fingers crossed for the new platform offering at least the original titles planned in 4K.
We are hopeful that Paramount Plus will support a range of devices, such as: Amazon Echo, Google Home, Android tablet, Android phone, Android TV, Apple TV 4K, iPhone, iPad, Mac OS, Roku Express, Roku Ultra, Roku Premiere, Roku Streaming Stick+, Roku Premiere+, Nvidia Shield, Windows, Oculus VR, Xbox One, Xbox One S, Xbox 360, PS4, PS3, PS Vita, PS5, Amazon Fire TV Stick, Amazon Fire TV Cube, Fire tablet, Google Chromecast, Airplay and TiVo Stream 4K.
It would make sense for Paramount+ to offer a free trial to entice existing subscribers to transfer over from CBS All Access, as well as to persuade new customers to add another streaming service to a market which is rapidly becoming saturated. However, there are no updates about a free trial offering at the time of writing.
Plans and pricing
The pricing for Paramount Plus has not been released at the time of writing. However, we know that CBS All Access costs $5.99 a month for the ads version, and $9.99 for the ad-free version. Therefore, we would predict that an expanded content library may cost $14.99 – which would be similar to HBO Max.
There are many competitors for Paramount Plus to measure up against upon its release. The service has been compared to HBO Max and Peacock in that it will be going live with an enviable collection of existing content which is conveniently available in one streaming hub. This means that people will either be persuaded enough by the content offering to swap one library of content for this one, sign up for as many platforms as there are available – or decide that Paramount+ is not worth the price. Only time will tell.
Is Paramount+ worth it?
Many who currently subscribe to CBS All Access may well find it a no-brainer to transfer over to Paramount+, especially if they are given an offer as existing customers. It remains to be seen whether this new platform will prove to be a worthy contender with big hitters such as HBO Max, Netflix and Amazon Prime Video – but we are hopeful that there will be another strong player on the market.