Fox News this week announced plans for a new streaming service, designed for what they consider the network’s “Superfans.” They will be the first of the major cable news networks to wade into the waters of unplugged viewers, offering ‘over-the-top’ access to new programming and on-air talent.
Our data suggest this might be an idea before its time, particularly given the profile of Fox’s current audience. See for yourself:
Of the three major cable news networks, Fox News has the fewest viewers who regularly watch television programming online, with barely 1 in 5 fitting that profile. 1 in 4 MSNBC viewers are frequent streamers.
If anyone should be contemplating an over-the-top service for its audience, it should be CNN. Over 1/3rd of CNN’s viewers frequently watch full TV programming online. This shouldn’t be all that shocking to anyone, given CNN’s decidedly younger, more urban audience – segments that generally over-index as tech-forward.
However, it’s worth noting that the largest group of regular TV streamers fall into the category of “Do not watch TV news.” Perhaps Fox News is chasing an idea before its time. Or, depending on the subscription cost and overall economics, maybe they only need a small percentage of their hyper-loyal viewers to make the whole thing profitable.
CNN can probably just wait to watch that play out.