Want to watch the GRAMMYs tonight but don’t have access to cable television? Looks like there’s good news for 28% of Americans. CBS has decided to stream the show live on the CBS All Access app for the first time. Customers in 14 markets around the country can either log on using an existing account or start a week-long free trial of CBS All Access, which usually costs US$5.99 per month.
The markets for CBS Live are currently New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas, Philadelphia, Miami, Boston, San Francisco, Detroit, Minneapolis, Baltimore, Denver, Pittsburgh and Sacramento.
The app will also include a special called GRAMMY Live, which gives a look behind the scenes of the event, including backstage access and red carpet commentaries, as well as access to all of CBS’s programs like The Big Bang Theory and The Good Wife.
There’s no doubt that with the introduction of this promotion, CBS is searching to expand its viewership and the use of its mobile app by luring viewers in with the intrigue and clout of the GRAMMYs. Historically, these single channel apps haven’t had much success in the marketplace against on-demand streaming media like Netflix and Hulu, except for HBO, which of course is different than your average pay-for-cable channel, as subscription is separate from cable television and mobile app use is included with subscription.
To make things worse, as of the end of 2013, Netflix officially surpassed HBO in terms of subscribers. Clearly demand for subscriptions to single channel mobile apps is waning in the shadow of the success and popularity of streaming services like Netflix.
As for CBS and their All Access app, hardcore music fans may opt into the free promotion, but it is unlikely that many will continue the paid service because of the extra costs. Some may fall into the trap and forget to cancel, forcing them to pay for at least one month of the service. Other than that, CBS will have trouble retaining many, if any, of those new subscribers. Customers are flocking to online streaming media with wider arrays of content, not to mention some CBS shows can already be watched on demand on Time Warner Cable, making the need for the mobile app even lower.