Time Warner Cable Now Has ‘TV Everywhere’ Access to Showtime2 Dec, 2013 By: Erik Gruenwedel
No. 2 cabler has been slow to ink rights with programmers due to issues over rights and fees
Multichannel video program distribution’s fractured rollout of TV Everywhere took another step Dec. 2 when Time Warner Cable said it signed a deal with CBS-owned Showtime Networks enabling its domestic subscribers on demand access to hundreds of hours of the network's programming, as well as the live broadcast of both the East and West Coast feeds on any computer, iPhone, iPad, Android phones and tablets or Kindle Fire.
For the first time, Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks subscribers can use the “Showtime Anytime” app to watch current and past seasons of Showtime original series such as “Dexter,” “Ray Donovan,” “Homeland,” “Masters of Sex,” “Californication,” “House of Lies,” “Web Therapy,” “Episodes,” and “Nurse Jackie,” along with box office movies, sports, documentaries and specials.
While TV Everywhere is considered MVPDs’ solution to over-the-top streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu Plus and Amazon Prime Instant Video, rollout has been scattered due to licensing fees and rights, among other issues.
Time Warner Cable has been slow to embrace TV Everywhere as it seeks greater retransmissions rights from content holders going forward. The cable operator and CBS endured a protracted renewal process over pay-TV rights during the summer — due in large part to streaming rights.
Indeed, John Martin, outgoing CFO of Time Warner — former parent of TWC — last month called out the No. 2 cabler for dragging its heels with license agreements regarding TV Everywhere.
Martin said the emphasis among content holders and distributors shouldn’t fixate on how much incremental revenue can be extracted from platforms, but rather, cooperating to produce a better value-proposition to consumers.
“Look, we only believe more firmly in [TV Everywhere] than ever before, meaning that we know that a greater percentage of video consumption going forward is going to be … on demand,” Martin said. “[But] there is a window of opportunity here that I think the industry needs to see because it’s not going to last forever.”