A few days ago, NBCU announced plans to create a comedy subscription service for streaming users to enjoy programs like The Tonight Show, Saturday Night Live, and more. With a proposed monthly fee of between $2 and $4 dollars, viewers without access to the broadcast channel can enjoy these shows. The problem is they already do, on You Tube, on Yahoo Screen, and in the SNL 40 app. Why pay for the cow if the milk is free?
Obviously, once these agreements expire, NBCU could make a case for exclusive access but aren't these online tools helpful in building subscriber loyalty and moving them to want to watch the latest shows. Could advertising dollars suffer in trying to start a subscription service? And aren't there alternative ways to watch these great shows.
TiVo thinks so and is touting their aggregation marketing plan that brings comedy programming from all the broadcast channels to your digital devices. Per Fox Business, "The 'Comedy Collections,' culled from ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC, will be
customized by TiVo subscribers into bundles of favorite sitcoms and late
night shows. According to Rogers, the cord cutters -- or TV viewers who
get content over the air (OTA) without paying a cable company -- will
be able to easily do their bundling as well, thanks to TiVo's Roamio OTA
(Over the Air) device." With a digital antenna and a DVR box like TiVo or Slingbox, anyone can achieve the same kind of collecting and viewing.
The challenge for cord cutters and any of us that use a DVR to record and playback later is that we have to plan in advance to record certain shows. With a streaming service, we simply have to check that a show is available then click to watch. No advance planning or set up required and that has been the beauty and simplicity of streaming content services.