Here’s the latest incentive for pay TV subscribers to cut the cord. Sony says today that it’s taking its PlayStation Vue streaming service nationwide. The company is adding 203 TV markets to cities where it has been available over the past year: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas, San Francisco and Miami.
“PlayStation Vue has been an ambitious project from the start, and national expansion demonstrates our ability to innovate in an industry that’s overdue for a reinvented experience,” says PlayStation Network Americas Head Eric Lempel. “Thanks to the strong network relationships we’ve forged and technology we’ve built, consumers nationwide can enjoy a better way to watch TV.”
It’s not for everybody, though. Vue only works with the PS4 and PS3 gaming consoles, Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick, and iPads and iPhones. It also works with iOS devices that use Google Chromecast. Users don’t need an additional set top box.
The programming options can be complicated. Vue offers live and on-demand content from channels including AMC, Disney, and ESPN. Programs from ABC, FOX and NBC are only available on-demand — typically within 24 hours after they first air — in the most basic plan Vue offers.
The company says it expects CBS live and on-demand programming in “select TV markets at a later date.”
Others working with Vue include Discovery Communications, Scripps Networks, Turner Broadcasting and Viacom. Subscribers can pay extra to receive standalone channels such as Showtime, Machinima and Fox Soccer Plus.
Consumers also have three packages from which to choose. They can pay $29.99 a month for Access Slim, which offers at least 55 channels including live cable TV, movies and sports. For $34.99 there the Core Slim package with more than 70 channels including live national and regional sports. And at $44.99 there’s the Elite Slim bundle with more than 100 channels, including extra movie and entertainment channels.
Users can access a Cloud DVR enabling them to record “hundreds of shows at once” with “10 times more storage than any DVR in the market today,” Sony says. They also can stream across different devices.