It’s a given that CBS wants to increase their subscriber base for CBS All Access, but another reason for putting the new Star Trek series on CBS All Access was the interest shown by other subscription video on demand (SVOD) services.
“Original programming was part of the game plan for CBS All Access from the start,” said Variety’s Cynthia Littleton. “Star Trek was a natural choice because the worldwide fan base for the enduring franchise virtually assures strong international sales. What’s more, CBS has been approached by more than one SVOD rival interested in reviving a Star Trek series. That told network execs it was a no-brainer to steer the show to CBS All Access, which is also home to the previous five Trek TV series, starting with the original 1966-69 edition.”
Television viewers have long demanded more viewing choices, with many becoming dissatisfied with cable TV’s all-or-nothing options. Cable costs have soared and viewers are often stuck with channels they never watch, while sometimes missing out on channels they do want to have available. Streaming services like Netflix and HBO seemed to offer more choices – what the viewer wanted at a reasonable price, but what has happened is that to get everything one wants, one must subscribe to multiple services. The costs add up without the convenience of the services all being in one place as is the case with cable or satellite television.
CBS wants its share of the VOD subscription pie and is counting on the popular Star Trek franchise to drive people to CBS All Access. SVOD services have found out quickly that in order to get subscribers, they must have new and fresh programming, not just classic reruns. The new Star Trek series is CBS‘s attempt to do just that.