Paramount Plus and Showtime Merged — What It Means for Subscribers

If you already have an active subscription to Showtime, will Paramount Plus be free? Here's what we know and what you can expect to spend.

Jennifer Farrington - Author

Feb. 22 2023, Updated 1:32 p.m. ET

A person streaming a movie.
Source: Getty Images

We all knew the Paramount Plus and Showtime merger was coming, but now that it’s here, viewers have questions. Will Showtime subscribers have access to Paramount Plus for free? Will some shows or movies get cut from the lineup? How will the Paramount Plus and Showtime merger affect customers and the current plans they already have?

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If you’re a Paramount Plus user or are already subscribed to Showtime and want answers to these questions, we’re addressing them and plenty of others. Plus, we’ll also divulge the details of the Showtime and Paramount Plus merger and provide a breakdown of the new costs you’ll incur if you want to access both.

Why did Paramount Plus and Showtime merge?

Showtime and Paramount Plus logos
Source: Twitter

Like all streaming service companies, Paramount Global has been hard at work trying to acquire new customers and keep those it already has. Although Paramount has roughly 46 million subscribers, it's considered to be lagging compared to the 223 million subscribers Netflix has and the 18 million Peacock is getting paid from.

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Not only will the merger classify Paramount Plus as the “definitive multi-platform brand in the streaming space,” as CEO Bob Bakish put it in a memo viewed by USA Today, but it will help broaden each streaming service’s reach, thereby allowing them to potentially collect new users while maintaining their current user count.

In addition to helping Paramount Global gain a better grip on the streaming industry, the Paramount Plus and Showtime merger is expected to result in several spinoffs of Showtime series, reported The Hollywood Reporter. The spinoffs, which will become a franchise of their own, are likely to include Dexter and Billions.

The source shared that there are “as many as four series connected to the Billions franchise.”

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What will happen to Showtime?

Although Showtime and Paramount Plus merged and are now being sold as a bundle, Paramount Plus with Showtime, those who already have active subscriptions don’t need to take any sort of action to keep their accounts. Paramount Plus is still being offered independently for $4.99 a month and Showtime is $10.99 a month.

Sometime between July and September 2023, the company will raise its Paramount Plus price by $1 to $5.99, CNBC reported. Although the company watched its user count increase during the fourth quarter, it's revenue reportedly declined by 7 percent which is likely the main factor driving future price hikes.

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Is Paramount Plus free if you already have Showtime?

If you already have an active subscription to Showtime, we regret to inform you that Paramount Plus isn't going to be free. Your Showtime subscription will only provide you with the incentives it promised at the time you signed up.

If you want to access Paramount Plus with your Showtime subscription, you’ll need to cancel your current plan and purchase the Paramount Plus with Showtime bundle on the Paramount Plus website.

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How much is Paramount Plus if I already have Showtime?

In order to access both Paramount Plus and Showtime, you’ll need to buy the “Essential plus Showtime” plan for $11.99 a month, or $120 a year. This plan includes content from Paramount Plus and Showtime as well as:

  • NFL on CBS and top soccer
  • Limited ads
  • 24/7 live news with CBS News
  • All content from Showtime, commercial-free

You also have the option to buy the “Premium plus Showtime” package for $14.99 a month, or $150 a year. This plan lets you access both Showtime and Paramount Plus, and includes the features mentioned above as well as:

  • Watch your local CBS station live
  • No ads unless you’re watching live TV and select shows
  • Access a broader range of sports shows
  • Download your shows and watch them later
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