Paramount Plus is the over-the-top (OTT) streaming service offered by Paramount Global. The service was formerly known as CBS All Access, but it was rebranded in 2021. All in all, this platform has quietly built one of the best mixes of on-demand programming and live sports coverage available today.
On Paramount Plus, you’ll find something for everyone in the family. Whether you have a household of Trekkies, a slew of soccer fans, or kids who want to watch some of the best Nickelodeon shows, this streamer has it. You’ll also find live NFL games, a live TV feed, and the option to upgrade to ad-free programming with SHOWTIME and CBS as a bonus. The pricing is already reasonable at $5.99 or $11.99 per month, but you can save 16% by paying annually.
Still not sure whether Paramount Plus is worth it for you? Read our review to find out everything you need to know.
|Paramount Plus specs
|On-Demand Movies and TV Shows
|Live TV Streaming
|Yes (upgrade required)
Our experience with Paramount Plus
We found that the service offered one of the most intuitive interfaces of any platform. The home screen has the typical slider of featured programs and live events, followed by rows dedicated to genres, your list of saved programs, and more.
It’s Paramount Plus’s sub-menus that stand out for being well organized and easy to navigate. You can easily visit pages for shows, movies, Live TV, sports, news, and SHOWTIME content, and you’ll find convenient sub-tabs for genres within each page. On the sports page, you’ll find pages for specific leagues and competitions, and you can set notifications for matches or entire sports you want to follow. We found it much easier to navigate than some competitor interfaces, and this was a standout feature for Paramount Plus.
Paramount Plus offers an impressive array of content for this price point. As the hub for all things Paramount Global, the service offers on-demand content from BET, CBS, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, and the Smithsonian Channel. That means your subscription includes not only every “Star Trek” show but programs like “NCIS,” “SpongeBob Squarepants,” “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” ”Everybody Hates Chris,” and much more. There aren’t as many high-quality originals as you’ll find on some competitors, but there’s a lot to like here.
The platform also features a rotating lineup of popular Paramount films, including current hits like “Dungeons and Dragons” and classics like “Mean Girls.” If you really want to bolster your lineup of critically acclaimed entertainment, you can upgrade to the Paramount Plus with SHOWTIME plan to get full access to SHOWTIME’S premium lineup of shows like “The Chi” and “Homeland.”
But Paramount Plus is more than a platform for on-demand entertainment. It also features popular live sports and a lineup of live TV channels. It’s home to an impressive lineup of soccer programming, including the UEFA Champions League, Serie A Italian soccer, CONCACAF soccer, and the National Women’s Soccer League, to name a few. Plus, you’ll find CBS broadcasts of NFL games on both plans, along with niche offerings like MMA combat, Scottish football, and more.
The live TV feed features channels like CBS News, CBS Sports HQ, and Mixible. You’ll also find channel feeds for specific live sports and some dedicated to specific programs like “Paw Patrol” or “Survivor.” If you upgrade to the premium plan, you’ll even get your local CBS feed.
DVR and recording options
Paramount Plus doesn’t offer any cloud DVR features or options for recording live programs. This is par for the course for most OTT streaming services. The good news is that you’ll find replays of recent live matches available on demand, so you often still have a chance to catch the game if you miss it. Additionally, if you upgrade to the Paramount Plus with SHOWTIME plan, you can download content to view offline.
Viewing experience and video quality
Paramount Plus offers similar quality to other streaming services on the market nowadays. Paramount Plus offers similar quality to other streaming services on the market nowadays. You’ll find some content in 1080p, and some in 720p, and the service will adjust based on your bandwidth and device capabilities. You can get some content in 4K Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, and HDR10 formats at 60 frames per second, but you’ll need to upgrade to the premium plan for this feature.
In our Paramount Plus review, we did encounter the occasional hiccup with live content. In some cases, live sports would stall out and need to be reloaded to pick up the live feed again. This may be a reflection of our available bandwidth, but we did notice it more with Paramount Plus than with other streaming platforms.
Personalization and security
It’s fairly easy to customize your Paramount Plus viewing experience. You can create up to six user profiles so that each person in your household can create their own watch lists and preferences.
The service also offers solid parental control features in two ways. First, when you create new profiles, you can set them to “Kids mode” and select “Younger Kids” or “Older Kids” to have the platform limit content available to those users. You can also set a PIN to limit kids’ abilities to switch profiles or to restrict access to certain content ratings. Overall, this helps to make Paramount Plus a fairly family-friendly service.
Sports fans: yay or nay
You may be wondering, “Is Paramount Plus worth it for sports fans?” The answer depends on which sports you most want to watch. This streaming platform is a must-have for soccer fans, as it features some of the top leagues in the U.S. and the world. NFL fans will also appreciate having access to the live CBS feed for streaming games. Beyond that, however, the service doesn’t have as much to offer except for some niche sports coverage. You won’t find any live baseball, hockey, basketball, or college sports here, but you can stream live analyses on CBS Sports HQ.
How does Paramount Plus compare to other streaming services?
|Cost Per Month
Paramount Plus fits right in among its closest competitors, and the content it offers is a good value for this price point. Its closest competitor, Peacock, offers a very similar slate of on-demand and live content, including an array of high-profile live sports. The two services go neck and neck, but Paramount’s premium plan has a slight edge in that it offers not only a local CBS feed and ad-free on-demand content but also access to SHOWTIME’S premium content.
The top-tier plan also competes well with Max in terms of premium content but again has the edge because it also includes live TV and sports. Similarly, Hulu’s basic plan only offers on-demand programming, so Paramount Plus offers a broader slate of content.
Where Paramount Plus falls short, however, is in its original content. Apart from SHOWTIME, you simply won’t find as many compelling original programs here as you will on Max, Hulu, or even Peacock.
How to subscribe to Paramount Plus
If you’ve signed up for any streaming plans recently, you’ll have a good feel for the process of signing up for Paramount Plus.
- Proceed to the signup page.
- Select the Paramount Plus Essential or Paramount Plus with SHOWTIME plan.
- Enter your account and payment information.
- Sign in and start watching.
Because Paramount Plus includes a seven-day free trial for new subscribers, you won’t pay a dime until your first week is up. If you decide the service isn’t for you, simply cancel before your trial is up and you won’t be charged. After that, you’ll be billed monthly, and you’ll still have access until the end of the billing cycle if you cancel your subscription.
How to cancel my Paramount Plus subscription
If you want to cancel your Paramount Plus subscription, you can do so anytime in a few simple steps:
- Log into your account in a web browser.
- Click on your profile avatar at the top right and select “Account.”
- Under “Subscription and Billing,” select “Cancel Subscription.”
- Follow the remaining prompts to complete your cancellation.
Is Paramount Plus worth it?
Paramount Plus has earned a rightful place among the best OTT streaming services. As our Paramount Plus review has shown, there are some holes in terms of popular sports and original programming, but there’s a lot on offer here. With so much solid on-demand content and an impressive slate of live sports offerings, the platform will satisfy viewers in search of high-quality entertainment and deep soccer analysis. Trekkies and soccer fans, especially, won’t need much convincing that this is the right streaming service for them.
The SHOWTIME upgrade is particularly valuable, putting this service on par with premium providers like Max and STARZ. As a bonus, you can try Paramount Plus for free for seven days, so there’s plenty of time to explore the platform for yourself.
Can I watch NFL on Paramount Plus?
Paramount Plus streams all NFL games that are broadcast on your local CBS station. You can access this feed even with the Essential plan, so no upgrade is required.
What is the cheapest way to get Paramount Plus?
Paramount Plus offers a free seven-day trial, and its Essential plan is only $5.99 per month. For an even better value, you can purchase the annual plan for only $59.99 per year — a 16% savings.
How can I get Paramount Plus for free?
If you’re a new subscriber, you can sign up for a free seven-day trial of Paramount Plus when you select your plan.
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