×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Leslie Moonves Talks Apple TV, Ad-Free Version of CBS All Access

CBS Corp. chief Leslie Moonves floated the possibility of an advertising free version of CBS All Access and poured cold water on Apple TV’s plans to launch a cable like channel package during his appearance Tuesday at the Business Insider conference in New York.

Referring to Apple’s hotly anticipated, but long-delayed, plans to offer a tier of channels subscribers could stream for a monthly fee, Moonves said, “They’ve had conversations on it, and I think they pressed the hold button.” His comments were the most definitive indication in quite some time that Apple’s bid to compete with pay-TV companies has stalled; the Cupertino, Calif.-company has yet to comment on the venture beyond indications from CEO Tim Cook that the TV business is “broken.”

Meanwhile, discussing the status of CBS All Access, the company’s stand-alone streaming service, Moonves said each subscriber is worth about $4 a month to the Eye in terms of advertising revenue. At present CBS All Access charges a $6 monthly fee for live streaming of the network and VOD access to current and library series with advertising included. The company is weighing options for offering a $10 monthly version that would be ad-free, similar to the tiered offering from Hulu.

“We’re thinking about it,” he said. “There could very well be a $9.99 product out there.”

Moonves appeared with CBS Interactive president Jim Lanzone. Moderator Brian Stelter of CNN did his best to get Moonves to divulge subscriber numbers for CBS All Access, which launched in October 2014. Moonves wouldn’t budge. “When Netflix tells us how many people are watching ‘House of Cards,’ then we’ll consider it,” he joked.

Lanzone noted that “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” ranks as CBS All Access’ most-streamed new series. “Colbert was huge right out of the gate,” he said.

Moonves and Lanzone also talked up the free CBSN streaming service that is CBS News’ advertising-supported digital hub. The service is not profitable, the pair admitted, but it’s not a capital intensive property either given that CBS News already produces so much content for the network.

Moreover, Moonves said CBSN is reaching an entirely new audience. The average age of the CBSN viewer is 40, compared to 70 for cable news overall and 61 for broadcast TV news overall.

Lanzone said a milestone moment for CBSN in terms of viewership came during the Nov. 13-15 period when the Paris terror attacks heightened viewership and CBS hosted its Nov. 14 Democratic presidential debate. The circulation on the site during that weekend reached 6 million users, he said.

 

More Digital

  • How Netflix Uses Technology: A Look

    How Netflix Wants to Take on Its Competition in 2019 and Beyond

    “They’re going to do some great shows. I’m going to be envious.” Netflix CEO Reed Hastings practiced humility when he was asked about new competitors like Disney’s and Apple’s upcoming streaming services this week. “These are amazing, large, well-funded companies with very significant efforts,” he said. “But you do your best job when you have [...]

  • AVOD streaming video OTT users -

    Comcast Unveils 'Flex,' a Streaming Service for Internet Customers

    Comcast said it would unveil “Flex,” a hub for its Internet-only customers that allows them to stream and purchase shows and movies, the latest effort by a traditional cable provider to latch on to customers who are migrating to broadband services, The Philadelphia cable giant will also make free, ad-supported services available via the service, [...]

  • splice

    Splice Raises $57.5 Million in Latest Funding Round

    Splice, a favorite of music creators that allows access to a library of three million rights-cleared sounds, announced today that the company closed a Series C funding round at $57.5 million. That brings Splice’s total amount raised to roughly $102 million since its launch in 2013. It raised a Series B in November of 2017. [...]

  • Facebook's 'Red Table Talk' Garners Daytime

    Facebook's 'Red Table Talk' Garners Daytime Emmy Nomination

    Facebook is now in the awards hunt: Its popular original series “Red Table Talk” hosted by Jada Pinkett Smith was nominated for a 2019 Daytime Emmy. It appears to be the first-ever Daytime Emmy Awards nomination for a Facebook-funded show, although a company rep was unable to confirm that. “Red Table Talk” is nominated in [...]

  • MLB-TV

    MLB.TV Joins Lineup on Amazon's Prime Video Channels

    Amazon has launched MLB.TV on Prime Video Channels for Prime members in the U.S., just in time for the start of Major League Baseball’s 2019 regular season start next week. The MLB.TV package provides regular-season out-of-market baseball games, both live and on-demand. Prime members in the U.S. can subscribe to MLB.TV for $24.99 per month, [...]

  • Tencent Music Shares Drop Despite Solid

    Tencent Music Shares Drop Despite Solid First Earnings Report

    Proving that good is not always good enough, Tencent Music Entertainment shares fell 9 percent after the Chinese company released its 2018 earnings, wiping out $2.7 billion in market capitalization of what is arguably the biggest audio music service in the world. Chalk it up to big expectations and a short track record: Wednesday’s earnings [...]

  • PewDiePie - YouTube

    PewDiePie vs. T-Series: YouTube Channels Keep Battling for No. 1 Spot

    UPDATED, 3/21: The back-and-forth competition for YouTube’s No. 1 spot continues. T-Series on Thursday again pulled ahead of YouTube’s PewDiePie as the No. 1 most-subscribed channel on the platform — but again the vlogger-gamer-comedian fans’ rallied behind him to retake the position. In a months-long symbolic running battle for the title, PewDiePie and his fans have [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content