Just the other day HBO said they would be bringing their content to consumers through a streaming method of some kind in 2015. I leave that vague, because HBO was vague about it. Offering up a few possible approaches, but nothing concrete yet. The news was that it was coming. I had hoped that other major network channels would start to do the same thing as well. While many of them have web pages and apps, you don’t get the same content, or access to content, as if you watched it live on your TV. Hell, some won’t work unless you have a traditional cable subscription. The streaming side of TV is starting to pick up slightly as CBS has announced a new service that may or may not be worth your time and money, as they have announced CBS All Access.
CBS All Access is available on the web, Android and iOS. They are offering up a 1 week free trial for people to give it a whirl. Once the 1 week ends you can expect to pay $5.99 a month for access. The fee gives you a number of perks like new episodes of your favorite show on demand the day after it aired, live TV stream in select markets, access to 6500 episodes including every episode of top shows like NCIS and ad-free viewing for classics like Star Trek, I love Lucy and CSI: Miami.
I signed up for the 1 week free trial to give it a spin on my phone. The layout is pretty nice and seems fairly easily to navigate around. If memory serves, the ABC app is the one that is a total nightmare to try to navigate through.
Yes, there are still ads in the app, and only the ad-free classic shows are commercial/ad-free. It is still a pretty slick setup though. You can check out the schedule and add shows to your “My Shows” page and even get alerts when your favorite shows new episode is ready to watch. I breezed through the latest episode of NCIS and it played through just fine, even with the ads. It is missing Chromecast support though, at least native. Through the web and the Chromecast cast tab option it casts well in full screen and HD.
The CBS app is free to install and you can cruise around and take a look at it. If you want to gain the additional functions and features though, you will need an All Access subscription.