Paramount Plus, the highly anticipated streaming service that was supposed to launch in the UK on June 22 – became available on Amazon’s Fire TV sticks and Android smartphones a day early.
Paramount+ confirmed to us that these are “technical releases” (see their full response below), and as of this writing, the service is available to download on Amazon’s App Store and on the Google Play Store.
- Update: The Paramount+ website is also live now and people can sign up.
- Update 2: The Paramount+ Amazon Prime Video Channel is now live too.
Furthermore, once installed on any of the supported devices (I was able to confirm this on a Fire TV Cube and an Android phone), users can already sign up for the free 7-day trial – and start watching (see my first impressions below).
The Paramount+ app isn’t new, as the streaming service has been available in the United States and other countries for several years – but it was presumably supposed to only show up on the Amazon and Google app stores on the official launch day – June 22.
At this point, the app doesn’t seem to be available on other UK streaming devices yet – such as Roku and Sky Glass, or as a Prime Video Channel, but those may show up throughout the day.
However, shortly after we published the article, the Paramount+ UK website went live as well.
- Also See: Our In-Depth Paramount+ UK Review
Regarding the early launch, a Paramount spokesperson told us that “Technical releases are underway in advance of our published launch date, as is standard practice with all new product releases.”
What Is Paramount Plus?
Paramount+ originally started as an American streaming service (previously known as CBS All Access), but it has been going global this year. It is owned by Paramount Global (previously ViacomCBS), which also owns Channel 5 in the UK.
- Also see our updated Paramount+ Guide: All Your Questions Answered
In the UK, Paramount+ costs £6.99/month or £69.90/year, and also offers a free 7-days trial (but you have to sign up with payment details if you want to use the trial – and can cancel before you get billed).
Sky Cinema subscribers with Sky Q and Sky Glass devices will be able to get Paramount+ for free, as a “bonus”. Sky+ customers will not get access to the full app, but will instead have a range of content automatically available on their box (see our full guide on how Sky customers can watch Paramount+ for free).
Keep in mind that we don’t know the exact Sky sign-up details yet, therefore if you sign up through the Amazon Fire TV Stick – you may not be able to then sign up via Sky (or will at least need to use a different e-mail address).
NOW subscribers (Sky’s streaming service) will not be getting Paramount+ for free, though they’ll be able to continue to watch some of Paramount’s films that will continue to show up on the Sky Cinema package.
Paramount+ UK: Early Impressions
With Paramount+ dropping a day early on Fire TV and Android devices, I was able to get a first glimpse at the UK version of the service.
At this early stage, while there are a lot of big-name shows, the numbers aren’t very big: I was able to count 246 separate shows (each with multiple seasons). A very respectable number, but still far from a long-running service like Netflix.
There are also films, and new content will be added to the service weekly, with a lot of new shows in the pipeline.
The interface will look familiar to anyone who ever used a streaming service, with rows of content, categories and a personal watchlist (with the ability to create different profiles for each family member).
Some shows that I was hoping to see on Paramount+ in the UK are still missing: there’s no sign of the big CBS reality shows – Survivor and The Amazing Race, and some Paramount+ Originals like The Good Fight and Star Trek: Picard are curiously missing, presumably because their rights are elsewhere (with Prime Video, in this case).
The streaming quality seems to be very good, with no buffering – but remember that, unfortunately, there’s no 4K/HDR support at this point, as that will only be added later.
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