Paramount closes its best streaming application?

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Paramount is in preliminary discussions to cancel Showtime and combine it with Paramount+.

By Joshua Jones | Published

Showtime can finally go away. According to the Wall Street Journal, Paramount Global is in “early discussions” about shutting down Showtime as a standalone service and plans to “migrate” the network’s slate to the company’s premium streaming service, Paramount+. This comes as many studios are in the midst of a streaming war and are hungry for new quality content.

According to company insiders, there are no imminent changes for the Showtime brand. The Wall Street Journal report adds that Paramount “discussed the idea of” scrapping Showtime in talks with a “major pay-TV partner.” No details were given as to which TV partner it might be.

Variety added that sources told them that Paramount was “considering” combining Showtime with Paramount+. The report notes that the plan is part of long-term discussions with distributors. This is happening just as SkyShowtime – a joint venture between Comcast and Paramount Global – is about to launch in many Nordic countries.

Paramount did not address the situation with Showtime in its statement. The company wrote that it was “exploring options to maximize the value of [their] investment in content. They also reaffirm their commitment to providing “quality content” to consumers through “a range of services and platforms”.

As Variety noted, the report comes after Paramount integrated Showtime into the Paramount+ app. The Paramount + Showtime bundle became available to subscribers on August 31 and gave subscribers access to content from both streamers in one place. The package also offered subscribers discounts of up to 33%.

During second-quarter results, the media conglomerate reported that Paramount+ had approximately 43.3 million paid subscribers. Total global subscribers reached 63.7 million in the second quarter, a gain of 1.7 million. Paramount’s decision to eventually “migrate” much of Showtime’s content to the streaming service could add more to their overall subscriber base.

The current Paramount+/Showtime package price is $11.99 per month for the first tier and $14.99 per month for the premium tier. The company recently struck a deal with Walmart to include Paramount+ in the retail giant’s membership program. The streaming service was initially labeled CBS All Access before being renamed last year.

The merger of Paramount+ and Showtime, as well as the growth of the streaming service, comes as other major streaming services plateau or decline in terms of subscriber base. In July, Variety reported that Netflix lost around 970,000 subscribers in the second quarter. Additionally, NBC’s Peacock streaming service stagnated at around 13 million in the same month.

While other streaming services seemed to be struggling, Paramount+ appears to be on the rise. Variety reported in August that the streamer more than doubled its revenue to $672 million in the second quarter. Additionally, their overall direct-to-consumer revenue increased by approximately 56%. The company could potentially see more of its numbers rise if the Paramount+ and Showtime report is accurate.

For now, it’s all about waiting to see if Paramount will actually discontinue Showtime. The premium television network has provided consumers with great content over the years. If he does indeed disappear, that will be another causality in the streaming wars.


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