CNN’s new streaming product is set to look an awful lot like its familiar cable network.
CNN Max, which debuted Wednesday, has been touted as a way to get news giant’s content out to a increasing number of cord-cutters and consumers who no longer view cable as their primary way to get video entertainment and information. And parent company Warner Bros. Discovery, in the belief, perhaps, that a streaming subscription is just as good as one to a cable or satellite service, is making the bulk of its linear lineup available to the broadband crowd.
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The weekday schedule of CNN Max features several new hours led by anchors such as Jim Acosta, Fredricka Whitfield, Rahel Solomon and Jim Scuitto. But a significant chunk of the service is built on CNN’s linear morning, late-afternoon and primetime schedule. When all is said and done, Max viewers will be able to see everything from Kasie Hunt’s “Early Start” and “CNN This Morning” to the usual evening lineup of Wolf Blitzer, Erin Burnett, Anderson Cooper, Kaitlan Collins, Abby Phillip and Laura Coates.
The same looks to be true on weekends, when CNN Max users will be able to watch Sunday staples such as “State of the Union, “Fareed Zakaria GPS” and “Inside Politics with Manu Raju” at the same time they air on CNN’s cable network.
Warner Bros. Discovery believes the audiences for CNN on cable and CNN on streaming are distinct, says and represent “two different audience segments,’ JB Perrette, the company’s streaming chief, told Variety in August. ”A Max user may be, on average, 30 years younger than the typical CNN viewer, he says. “We believe this is additive, and reaches an audience that the current pay-TV marketplace does not reach.”
Other parts of the weekday schedule will be filled by hours from CNN’s international service. This includes a new show on U.S. politics led by Hunt, a new program co-anchored by Zain Asher and Bianna Golodryga and a weekday program led by Christiane Amanpour.
There are new elements, too. Victor Blackwell, who co-anchors CNN’s morning program on weekends, will get a new hour on CNN Max. Meanwhile, weekend anchors such as Whitfield and Acosta and Amara Walker are taking on new hours for the streaming service during the week. Some of their weekend shifts from linear CNN will be simulcast on CNN Max on Saturdays and Sundays. CNN said earlier this week that “Who’s Talking to Chris Wallace,” a show that has been streamed on Max and broadcast on CNN, will run now in streaming-only fashion.
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