CBS All Access, NBC and Watch ABC were first to live streaming network TV on the internet, but this week Fox Now became the first broadcast network to stream its live TV nationwide. Unlike the CBS app, Fox is tying this “beta” access to the live streams to TV Everywhere authentications, which means cord cutters are not invited unless they snag a login from someone with cable TV (Disney-owned ABC and Comcast-owned NBC do the same). We’ll have to wait and see if Fox ever opens things up for people to simply buy internet access, but for now its says 98 percent of pay TV subscribers should have access, representing some 96 million homes.
Monday night viewers could stream So You Thing You Can Dance: The Next Generation via the Fox website or its apps on iPhone, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire, Apple TV and Chromecast. The plan is to stream its other primetime content too, and all the new shows when they start airing this fall. What is not included is sports, which will still stream through the Fox Sports Go app.
Conflicts with local affiliates and their owners have slowed down the rollout of other broadcast network’s live streaming features so far. The reason why Fox may have been able to roll this out nationwide is technology that’s letting local affiliates insert their ads and branding. The Fox Now app is apparently up to more than 25 million downloads, and if your cable or satellite company is one of the 10 biggest, then you’ll definitely be able to log in and watch immediately.