CBS is today launching an online news channel that'll be broadcasting over its website and apps 24 hours a day, all week long. CBS is naming the naming the new network CBSN, and it plans to fill it with live, anchored coverage from 9AM to midnight Eastern every weekday. This is the first digital streaming news channel out there, according to CBS, and it's certainly an ambitious move on the network's part that shows it's taking the move toward online distribution seriously. Just last month, it also began offering streaming access to CBS proper with a subscription.
"There’s a tremendous opportunity on these platforms."
CBSN's content doesn't mirror what you'll find on CBS, offering its own coverage as well as content from CBS News, Sports, and other affiliates. The network says that it may also switch to showing CBS News content when breaking reports are being aired. But viewing the stream live is only one way to watch CBSN: it also allows viewers to skip around through prior coverage, almost in an on-demand style for recently aired segments. You'll be able to watch the network on CBS' website as well as on the Roku and Fire TV. It's also available on CBS News' Windows 8 app, and it'll come to its Android app before the end of the year. CBS doesn't make note of whether access will be available on Apple's platforms.
"There’s a tremendous opportunity on these platforms for a true round-the-clock newscast," CBS CEO Les Moonves says in a statement. "We’re confident this service will appeal to both traditional news consumers and a whole new set of viewers." The service is supported by commercials, meaning that CBSN isn't all that different of a venture than what CBS is already used to. Moonves knows that there are a good number of viewers out there who only want to watch TV online, and increasingly he's been willing to give it to them. CBSN is a strong step in that direction, with CBS attempting to adapt its coverage to modern platforms that aren't beholden to the live broadcast.