US cable network Showtime to launch streaming service with Apple

3 Jun 2015

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Showtime, the US cable network behind such shows as Homeland, Dexter and the forthcoming Twin Peaks, has announced the launch of a new online app in partnership with Apple.

CNET reports that the service, simply called Showtime, will be available in the US via iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and Apple TV, and is set to launch on 12 July to coincide with the premieres of new series of Masters of Sex and Ray Donovan. The deal with Apple is not exclusive, however, and new partners are expected to be announced before the launch.

Customers can sign up for US$10.99 per month after a free 30-day trial period and don’t require a subscription to the Showtime TV network. As well as new shows, users will also be able to access some of the network’s back catalogue, and stream movies and live sporting events. The app won’t, however, be available outside the US. Click below to watch a trailer.

The service mirrors that of Showtime’s great rival HBO, which launched the standalone streaming system HBO Now in April.  Showtime, however, appears to be attempting to undercut the competition. Its app will cost US$11 a month while HBO Now is $15 monthly.

The move is hardly surprising. Figures released in April revealed that streaming services have overtaken live television as the primary way Americans take in their video content. Deloitte’s annual Digital Democracy Survey found that 56pc of viewers stream movies and 53pc stream television every month, while just 45pc prefer to watch TV live. The trend is particularly prominent among younger viewers, with nearly 60pc of millennials’ (those aged 14-25) media consumption time spent watching movies via desktops, tablets and smartphones.

Closer to home, recent research has found two-thirds of all adults in Ireland have watched video-on-demand services within the last six months.

Dean is a freelance journalist and editor covering media.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com