CBS will open the floodgates of streaming video with new phone and tablet apps and full episodes for all of its primetime shows.
The CBS app, which launched on iOS in March, is now joined by new apps for Android and Windows 8. And, as GigaOM reports, CBS will offer the latest five episodes of every primetime CBS show, not just a limited selection of episodes. The new apps also will include full episodes of classic CBS shows such as Macgyver and Star Trek.
There is just one catch: Full episodes won't show up via the app until eight days after they air. If you want to watch any sooner, you'll have to visit CBS's website. (That's not a problem for Windows 8, which supports Adobe Flash on the web, at least.)
It's been interesting to watch major TV networks slowly come around to offering their own streaming-video apps on phones and tablets. As the chart below shows, iOS and Android now have full episode streaming from all four major networks--ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox--with only the Fox Now app requiring a cable subscription.
Microsoft's platforms are further behind. On Windows 8, NBC is the lone holdout among the major networks, but none of the networks offer full episode streaming on Windows Phone 8. (This could be one of the arguments for having a combined app store for both platforms.) Still, it's a better situation than that of Blackberry 10, which doesn't even have the subscription-based Hulu Plus to fall back on.
Streaming-video apps have been a weak point for Windows 8 , with some noteworthy apps like HBO Go and an official YouTube client still missing. Still, CBS is a nice addition, especially with a wave of Windows 8 tablets and hybrids available. It's also another reason to consider Windows 8 as part of a home-theater PC setup.