Another cable network is jumping into streaming.
FX is launching its own stand-alone streaming service, bringing users ad-free viewing of its current slate of shows — including “Atlanta” and “American Horror Story” — for $5.99 a month. The new service, dubbed FX+, stems from a partnership between the cable channel and Comcast, and will be available only through Comcast’s XFinity platform starting Sept. 5. It’ll also include content from FXX as well.
“This initiative represents the first of its kind for an ad-supported cable network, and begins to put us on equal footing with premium networks and streaming services,” FX’s chief executive, John Landgraf, said in a statement.
FX+ subscribers will be able to watch a number of catalog shows, like “The Shield” and “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia,” but many of the network’s main attractions will be missing due to existing deals with other providers. “The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story” has been grabbed by Netflix, and Amazon has staked its claim to “The Americans.”
The deal signals a growing trend in cable, with FX following in the footsteps of AMC — which debuted its own $5-a-month streaming service with Comcast last month. It also points to the increasing importance for networks to control their own catalog of content. A library of shows will serve channels better than licensing their content to streaming juggernauts like Netflix and Hulu as these services become more commonplace.