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CBS Expands ‘All Access’ Live Local TV Streaming to Two-Thirds of U.S.

The Eye has reached deals for the over-the-top subscription service with 13 more affiliates

CBS continues to build out the over-the-top All Access video-subscription service, announcing deals Thursday with 13 additional affiliate station groups to provide live-streaming of local TV stations.

The new deals will bring live local programming of CBS All Access to 64% of U.S. households, spanning 94 markets in total, according to the Eye. Under those pacts, the affiliates receive a share of the $5.99-per-month All Access subscription fee; CBS won’t reveal what that revenue split is.

CBS All Access, launched last fall and aimed at the Eye’s “super-fans,” provides a wealth of on-demand content from the broadcaster’s current-season shows plus a smorgasbord of “classic” shows, as well as local-station feeds among participating affils. (The service excludes access to live NFL programming.)

Also Thursday, CBS announced that users with Google’s Chromecast, the $35 Internet-to-TV adapter, can now stream content from CBS.com and the broadcaster’s app, including content from All Access subscription service, to their HDTVs.

The 13 new affiliate partners, which will add their feeds to All Access over the next several weeks, are Bahakel Communications, Block Communications, Capitol Broadcasting, Cox Media Group, Draper Holdings, Ft. Myers Broadcasting, Griffin Communications, Meridian Media, Midwest Television, Mt. Mansfield Television, News-Press & Gazette Company, Schurz Communications and West Virginia Media Holdings.

Those join the 12 affiliates that signed on to join the CBS All Access service in April along with the 14 owned-and-operated CBS stations that were in the service’s October 2014 launch. The affiliate partners announced Thursday serve markets including Seattle; Raleigh-Durham, N.C.; San Diego; Oklahoma City; Santa Barbara, Calif.; Palm Springs, Calif.; and Wichita, Kan.

CBS has not announced how many people have signed up for All Access. However, execs have pronounced it a success: CBS Interactive chief Jim Lanzone has claimed users of the OTT service watch twice as much online video as non-subscribers.

“The addition of these 13 affiliate groups underscores the tremendous momentum we have in building CBS All Access, and reflects the strong partnership between CBS and our CBS affiliates,” said Ray Hopkins, the Eye’s president of television networks distribution.

The local live-streams are made available through technology firm Syncbak, in which CBS has a minority investment. Syncbak, whose other investors include the National Assn. of Broadcasters and the Consumer Electronics Assn., provides geo-targeting of the live feeds to in-market subscribers (so streams are accessible only in those local areas).

For markets in which CBS affils have not reached deals to participate in the service, All Access subscribers still have access to nearly 7,000 episodes on-demand via Roku, Chromecast, iOS and Android apps and CBS.com.

CBS All Access’ on-demand offering includes episodes from the current season, including full current seasons of 19 shows with episodes available after they air. (Among the exceptions are “Big Bang Theory” and “2 Broke Girls,” for which only seven recent eps are available.) In addition, All Access includes access to older series such as “MacGyver,” “Star Trek,” “Cheers” and “Twin Peaks.”

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