The home network of hit U.S. shows like Dexter, Homeland and Ray Donovan has announced plans to launch a standalone streaming service, a la HBO Now.
The Showtime network in the United States is launching a fully over-the-top network, allowing those without a monthly cable or satellite subscription to access its programming via the web.
The highly-regarded network will charge $10.99 (about £7) a month for full access to its live and on demand library, which significantly undercuts the HBO Now offering, which launched in April.
HBO is charging $15 (about £9.50) a month for the subscription-free HBO Now offering, which brings access to shows like Game of Thrones over iOS devices, Apple TV and extending to Android sooner rather than later.
The Showtime streaming service will arrive on July 12, 2015, just in time for the season premieres of Ray Donavan and Masters of Sex.
The move by Showtime is another major step towards the cord-cutting era, where viewers can access whatever programming the like over the web, without signing up for a lengthy and expensive cable platform.
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“Going over-the-top means Showtime will be much more accessible to tens of millions of potential new subscribers,” said Les Moonves, the CEO of Showtime’s parent company CBS in a statement.
CBS has been one of the networks at the forefront of the movement to minimalise the public’s reliance on cable for premium content.
Moonves has already admitted his networks are in discussions with Apple over Cupertino’s rumoured cable-free subscription service. CBS is also offering a $6 a month option which enables viewers to stream its programming, with built-in access to local content.