Farewell CBS All Access, we hardly knew you. ViacomCBS is officially rebranding its streaming service from CBS All Access to Paramount+, joining the many streaming platforms that have added a plus sign to their name. The name change will be official by early 2021.
As if the streaming wars couldn’t get complicated enough, companies have to frequently change the titles of their platforms and confuse us further. First it was WarnerMedia and its baffling rollout of HBO Max (RIP HBO Go and HBO Now), and now ViacomCBS is pulling the same schtick with CBS All Access, which will soon be rebranded as Paramount+. Joining the trend of streaming platforms with a plus sign in their name (see: Apple TV+, Disney+, ESPN+, Ryan Reynolds’ Mint Mobile+), CBS All Access is becoming Paramount+ in early 2021, per a press release from ViacomCBS.
The move is “part of the service’s expansion to feature content from ViacomCBS’ leading portfolio of broadcast, news, sports, and entertainment brands,” the release states. Paramount+ will also launch in Australia, Latin America, and the Nordics in 2021 before expanding to more international markets. ViacomCBS President and CEO Bob Bakish added in a statement:
“With Paramount+, we’re excited to establish one global streaming brand in the broad-pay segment that will draw on the sheer breadth and depth of the ViacomCBS portfolio to offer an extraordinary collection of content for everyone to enjoy.”
ViacomCBS also announced a fresh slate of five new original shows coming to Paramount+, one of which is a 10-episode scripted miniseries based on producer Al Ruddy’s experience making The Godfather. The other four include the spy drama Lioness from Yellowstone‘s Taylor Sheridan; a reimagining of Behind the Music titled MTV’s Behind the Music — The Top 40; The Real Criminal Minds, a true-crime docuseries based on the CBS series; and a revival of The Game. More programming will be announced ahead of launch.
This title change is something only executives could think of as smart — Paramount is a more recognizable and respected brand than CBS — but the thing they forget is how tired we all are of these changing streaming names and those damn plus signs. What does the plus sign mean? Nothing! Then there’s the confusing situation with Paramount Network, a ViacomCBS cable network that had its own history of name-changes back in the days (from the Nashville Network, to Spike TV, to what have you) and tried its hand at trendy original titles like the ill-fated Heathers reboot. It’s a recipe for confusion for any potential CBS All Access, excuse me, Paramount+ subscribers.
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