ViacomCBS Expects 16 Million Streaming Video Subscribers in 2020

Posted on February 22, 2020 by Paul Thurrott in Music + Videos, Smart Home with 11 Comments

Viacom owns CBS All Access and Showtime, and the firm expects combined paid subscriber growth to continue skyrocketing this year. That said, it has a long way to go before it can seriously threaten market leaders like Netflix, and Amazon Prime Video.

ViacomCBS CEO Bob Bakish told investors Thursday that it expected the combined paid subscriber base of its CBS All Access and Showtime services to reach 16 million by the end of 2020. The services ended 2019 with 11 million combined paid subscribers, a jump of 50 percent year-over-year. And it expects to reach 25 million subscribers by 2022.

The key to growth of any service, of course, is content, and ViacomCBS has a mix of both new original content—like Star Trek: Discovery and Star Trek: Picard at CBS All Access, and Homeland and Billions at Showtime—and strong back catalogs.

The firm also offers Pluto TV, a free ad-supported Internet TV service. Pluto TV now has 22.4 million monthly active users, ViacomCBS says, and it expects it to hit 30 million monthly active users by the end of 2020.

By comparison, Netflix has about 167 million subscribers, and Amazon counts about 150 million, though that figure is no doubt inflated because its video service is a perk of the broader Prime service. Third-place Hulu has about 30 million subscribers.

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Comments (11)

11 responses to “ViacomCBS Expects 16 Million Streaming Video Subscribers in 2020”

  1. behindmyscreen

    They should consider making PlutoTV part of CBS all access as an ad only tier

  2. j_c

    The annoyance of having so many streaming services is somewhat blunted by the freedom you have to jump between them. I did All Access the last month to give Picard and Discovery a shot. Wasn’t thrilled with either of them so I just hit cancel. I regularly do a month or two of HBO and binge watch a series or some movies and then cancel. Still cheaper and more convenient than going out to a movie every month.

    • wolters

      In reply to j_c:

      I tried discovery but just couldn't get into the direction it was going...and to have yet another prequel didn't help either.

      Picard is better but slowly losing interest in it.

  3. sherlockholmes

    Not with that crappy new STAR TREK Show.

  4. hellcatm

    If this happens it breaks my heart. I think Gene Roddenberry would be against a paid streaming service. I was hoping CBS All Access would be a flop so they would put the show on regular TV then to Netflix. So many streaming services isn't good. BUT I wonder how many people watch Star Trek, then halt the service until its back on (and the whole season is on CBSAA) and after they binge the show they halt the service again. That's what I'll be doing...Same with shows on HBO and other services. The only constant will probably be Netflix and maybe Hulu, and of course Prime Video because you get it with Amazon Prime.

  5. zicoz

    The streaming market is going to crash so hard soon. The content is spread across too many different companies now.

  6. Rob_Wade

    I joined when they start that disgusting Star Trek Discovery series. I cancelled shortly thereafter. And "Picard" is not helping their case at all. CBS can rot.