Yesterday, CBS Broadcasting Inc. surprised the “trekkies” with the announcement of a new Star Trek TV series. More surprisingly, however, is how the broadcaster plans to distribute the long-awaited TV reboot. Reportedly, CBS is set to air the premiere episode on TV in early 2017 but will be putting all remaining episodes exclusively on CBS All Access, the subscription-based OTT streaming service it launched last fall.
Covering all CBS’ current content and back catalogue, All Access currently has about 100,000 subscribers, a number that pales in comparison to the likes of Netflix (69 million subs worldwide) and Hulu (9 million). As a longstanding Sci-Fi franchise, Star Trek has built up a sizable number of devoted fans over the decades, a fanbase that CBS is clearly betting on to fuel the growth of its fledgling streaming service.
With more and more attention shifting from linear TV viewing to on-demand streaming, it makes sense for CBS to take proactive measures and leverage the enduring popularity of Star Trek franchise to raise the profile of its streaming service. Whether other networks will follow suit and start developing high-profile content exclusively for streaming platforms remains to be seen, but in the long run, this will likely prove to be a smart move for CBS.
Source: The Verge