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State of the Screens

Breaking News: CNN+ Streaming Soon

By June 17, 2021No Comments

News Breaking Out of TV

Big news: AT&T has confirmed that CNN will be launching a direct-to-consumer (D2C) service in 2022.

Why this matters #1: CNN+ will be following the 2018 D2C launch of Fox Nation, now available in 37 countries.

Quote from Jason Kilar – CEO @ WarnerMedia:
“I would argue that there’s an opportunity to do more than just those two things. I would argue that there’s an opportunity to take that franchise that is the incredible, talented team at CNN and have them manifest their journalism additionally through direct-to-consumer environments. By the way, it’s very possible for us to have a linear HBO service and to have HBO Max. So, I would argue, using that analogy, that it’s absolutely possible for CNN to both have a linear channel…and be able to invent and serve customers in other ways over the internet.”

Why this matters #2: News accounted for 20% of all TV viewing in 2020 and is a primary reason why consumers subscribe to pay-TV.

The main reason someone pays for live TV, according to Civic Science:
1) News – 30%
2) Live content – 23%
3) Sports – 22%

Which of these is the main reason you still pay for live TV

Mr. Screen’s Crystal Ball: Cable news is undervalued in the bundle making an appealing a-la-carte option.

Most Expensive US TV Networks and Regular Viewership

Big question: What does the video news business look like in 2030?

Back in January, we outlined four likely scenarios for the future of news.

Scenario #1: Video news is consumed primarily live AND through a bundle. New players (Newsmax, etc.) may emerge to fill niche gaps, but live sports and news create enough demand that new bundles (Apple, HBO Max, Xfinity Flex, etc.) provide an attractive offering. The business model is a mix of subscription fees and advertising.

Scenario #2: Video news is consumed primarily live through a direct-to-consumer (D2C) subscription (Fox Nation, rumored CNN offering, etc.). The business model is a mix of subscription fees and advertising.

Scenario #3: Video news is consumed primarily live BUT WITHOUT a paid subscription (Tubi, Newsy, Cheddar, etc.). The business model is primarily advertising.

Streaming News

FYI: Cable news viewership has (finally) started to decline during the first 100 days of the Biden administration.

News Networks See Decline in Biden's First 100 Days

More #1: “You May Never See Those Numbers Again”: Can Cable News Pass the Post-Trump Test?


More #2: Exclusive: The Recount raises $18 million Series B

Michael Beach

Michael Beach

Michael Beach is the Chief Executive Officer of Cross Screen Media, a media analytics and software company that enables marketers to plan, activate, and measure CTV and linear TV at the local level. Michael is also the founder and editor of State of the Screens, a weekly newsletter focused on video advertising that is a must-read for thought leaders in the advertising industry. He has appeared in such publications as PBS Frontline, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Axios, CNBC and Bloomberg, and on NPR’s Planet Money podcast.

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