Cablefax The Magazine - March 2016 - 20

TOP 10 SVOD PICKS
Every day it seems another subscription video on demand service launches, hoping to snag a few dollars
from consumers each month. Whether you call them SVOD, OTT or direct-to-consumer, they're all competing
against each other and traditional channels in a crowded landscape. Who survives remains to be seen, but
these are the 10 services that we believe could go the distance.
CBS All Access
Launch Date: Oct. 16, 2014
Sub Count: Not releasing numbers at this time
Subscription cost: $5.99/month
Headquarters: NYC and L.A.
Why Them? CBS burst on to the scene as
the fi rst major broadcaster with a direct-toconsumer
offering, giving it immediate street
cred with those who are cutting the cord. That
continues to grow as more markets offering
live streaming through All Access (currently
about 80+ percent of the US population can
view live streaming). It's also a good service
for those who relish classic TV. The CBS vault
is extensive, including everything from " I
Love Lucy " to " Twin Peaks. " With an All Access
subscription, viewers get every episode
ever made. You can also watch every single
" Star Trek " episode out there. CBS is taking
advantage of that fan base, using All Access to
launch a new, original Star Trek series in 2017.
CuriosityStream
Launch Date: March 18, 2015
Subscription Count: Not released
Subscription cost: Starts at $2.99/month
Headquarters: Silver Spring, MD
Why Them? We pay close attention to anything
John Hendricks is launching. After all, he
understood the hunger for nonfi ction programming
with the launch of the Discovery Channel
in 1985. One thing that may really help set
CuriosityStream apart-besides its wide array
of nonfi ction-is the launch of 4K content. It's
planning on adding ultra high-def programming
this month, which could fi ll a need for
all those folks who have 4K sets but nothing
to watch on them. The SVOD service already
features more than 1000 documentaries and
series from fi lmmakers around the world.
Crunchyroll
Launch date: 2008 Subscription count: Approaching 750,000 paid subscribers
Subscription cost: Starts at $6.95 per month Headquarters: San Francisco, CA
Why? Yes, Crunchyroll serves a niche audience-those who love anime and other East Asian content-but it
has amassed quite a following. Crunchyroll also has a free offering, which can serve as a gateway to the full
buffet, which includes newer programming. What sets Crunchyroll apart-and gets people to spend their Starbucks
coffee money on-is that it offers unique content. CEO Kun Gao has said the trick is to address a niche,
but have a category that's large enough to get to scale. Crunchyroll seems to have hit that combo, with Parks
Associates recently listing it in its ranks of top 10 OTT services based on subscriber numbers. For 2016, the
Crunchyroll team will focus on establishing a stronger presence in Latin America and parts of Europe.
20
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