Showtime hints that online-only subscriptions may be on the way

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Ever since HBO Go launched in 2010, bringing streamable premium programming to its cable subscribers, the network has been hounded by one question in particular: Will they ever uncouple HBO Go from a cable subscription? While the network has long held out against making this beautiful ideal a reality, one of its competitors might beat it to the punch.

According to Forbes, CBS COO Joseph Ianniello teased the possibility of an online-only subscription to the network’s premium channel Showtime. While the executive wouldn’t say any such plan was being developed or tested, he took a moment during his talk at New York’s Nomura Digital Media Conference to note that nothing about its contracts with cable/satellite providers preclude such a service.

While cord-cutters might be elated to know that executives are thinking of them, it still might be some time before the platonic ideal of streaming TV becomes a reality. As Forbes notes, while demand for such services are there, they don’t benefit cable providers—a group of companies that’s likely to act swiftly to defend its interests.

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