A massive reveal has showed that YouTube are working on a paid subscription service called Unplugged that streams cable TV online.
YouTube, the 11 year old video hosting and streaming site has grown into the largest online video aggregator, owned by one of the biggest tech companies in the world – Alphabet Inc. (Google). It’s been slowly building it’s service and now it’s ready to expand, with its first subscription service launching late last year YouTube are now investing in streaming Cable TV.
The service called Unplugged was revealed to Bloomberg News by “people familiar with the plan”. According to these insiders YouTube have been developing their Cable streaming page since as far back as 2012, with the project finally wrapping up and hoping to launch next year.
YouTube executives have reportedly been in discussions with major channels and networks including NBCUniversal, Viacom, Twenty-First Century Fox, and CBS. No deals or licenses have been finalised yet but with Unplugged expecting to launch next year we can assume YouTube are close to signing some contracts.
With other tech companies planning similar services, including Hulu who only announced yesterday their plans for online TV streaming, YouTube will have to speed up it’s process if it doesn’t want to appear as just another bandwagoner. Though pricing has been vague for these services Hulu is rumoured to charge around $40 whilst sources suggest YouTube aim for Unplugged to cost under $35 a month.
To bolster their service YouTube are reportedly considering “theme packs” that include less-watched channels as extras to the primary bundle. The extra content could range from kids TV to sports and news. This is something already offered by Sling, Dish’s service that already offers live TV streaming online.
This service could establish YouTube as the primary platform for video globally, as online video already surpasses Cable Network’s reach. If YouTube became the home of user created content as well as TV it would dominate.
As this is leaked information YouTube have so far not commented on the service’s existence. When anything is revealed be sure to find it here on the RouteNote blog.