Look at Paramount+ Launch Day

Yup, another streaming service has launched. Like most streaming services, it’s been available in the US for a while now, launching shows exclusively on that service, and then wondering why people in other countries are illegally watching it instead of waiting months and ignoring spoilers online while trying to be part of the fandom. There’s a lot of streaming services available now, so is another one really worth getting? I’ll provide the key points and let you decide.

Price

Pretty cheap really, especially compared to other services. It’s either £6.99 a month, or you can save £14 a year by buying an annual membership for £69.90. Here are the others for comparison:

Disney+: £7.99p/m or £79.90 a year.

Amazon Prime: £7.99p/m or £79 a year.

Netflix: Between £6.99 and £15.99p/m

Mubi: £9.99p/m or £95.88 a year

Apple+: £4.99p/m

BritBox: £5.99p/m

Like most services, Paramount+ does have a 7day free trial

Availability

The service is available in the usual places:

Desktop

Phone (iPhone and android)

Apple TV

Android TV

FireTV

Roku

Chromecast

Samsung TV

Sky Q

Sky Glass

For all of them, check your model is compatible. Have seen a few people say firestick version doesn’t work, just autoruns free trial and can’t set up profiles for parental controls, and can’t search. There is one thing missing though: consoles. Xbox and Playstations have been marketed as “entertainment devices”, so a large streaming service not being available cuts out a lot of customers, especially when other streaming services are available. I think they will be launching a console-friendly version soon, but to not have one at launch is a bit of a letdown.

User Interface

Do you like the layout of Disney+? Then you’ll like this, the layout is near identical. I get why, having something completely new could be disorientating to users. But it does mean that it lacks a visual identity.

Content

This is the weakest part of the service so far. The content is not quite up to the level of the others. This ties into the user interface too. Like Disney+, they have tabs at the top:

  • Paramount+ Originals and Exclusives
  • Showtime
  • Comedy Cental
  • MTV
  • Nickelodeon
  • Nick JR.
  • Smithsonian Channel

There’s just not enough content at the moment for some of those categories. Nick Jr. has less than 30 things in that section, Showtime has 31, Comedy Central has a laughable SIX. You don’t need a separate channel just for 6 items.

It’s got some okay stuff in terms of TV shows, but most of it is stuff that has only recently come off other streaming services (or in some cases is still there): South Park, Cheers, Broad City.

On the plus side there are quite a few good movies on there, but there are also some weird omissions. It has one Halloween movie, the sixth one. That’s almost worst than not having any at all. I was excited by all the Friday The 13th movies there, but it doesn’t. It has them up to and including the eighth one, so it doesn’t have Jason X, Jason Goes To Hell, Freddy Vs. Jason, or the remake. The last two make sense as they’re not essential to the franchise, but the other two are a bit weird. Also missing, the third one. That’s a weird one to miss out, especially as it’s very important to the franchise as it’s where Jason got his hockey mask.

I’m hoping they expand the content soon, the UK is already losing out by not having any of the sports available to international users, so it needs something to make up for that.

Summary

So is it worth getting? Unless you’re desperate for some of the exclusives, I don’t think it is at the moment. That’s solely down to the content. They need to start adding more stuff. To me, what made Disney+ a lot better is when they added Star, it meant that even non-disney fans could find a lot of things to like. Paramount doesn’t have that, it’s missing the hook to draw people in. At the moment it seems like they’re counting on Star Trek to draw people in, outside of that it doesn’t have that much to offer. The movies especially need more. The advantage of having some of these services is when they launch new-ish movies on there. This doesn’t have that. I think it will be adding some new releases, but at the moment under “new releases and blockbuster movies” they have South Park, Ray Donovan, Paw Patrol, Paranamoral Activity (released 2021), Mission Impossible Ghost Protocol, and some Transformers movies. Not really something that makes it worth it.

I have confidence that in the coming months, they will improve the content and it will be worth getting. But at the moment? Not really sure of the point of it. There’s no “oh no, you NEED this service because…….”. The best reason to get it now is to get locked into a yearly one in case they raise the price in the future.