How to Use Paramount+

Stream Paramount films and CBS on-demand content

What to Know

  • Go to www.paramountplus.com and select Try It Free. Enter your name and a password.
  • Select Sign Up and choose a billing plan. Select Paramount+.
  • Choose Select Your Device to set up a streaming device.

This article explains how to sign up for a Paramount+ account and select a plan and watch CBS live television and on-demand content. Paramount+ can be viewed on televisions from various manufacturers, including LG, Samsung, Panasonic, Sony, Vizio, and more.

How to Sign Up for Paramount+

Paramount+ (formerly CBS All Access) is a single-network streaming service that allows cord-cutters to watch live television without a cable subscription. Unlike most other services, it offers content from CBS and other channels from the parent company, ViacomCBS. It's also one of the only places you can watch CBS online, and it's the only place anywhere that you can watch exclusive content like Star Trek: Discovery.

Paramount+ is easy to sign up for, and it includes a free trial period. You have to enter your billing information, but the company won't charge you if you cancel before the trial period ends.

To sign up for Paramount+:

  1. Navigate to www.paramountplus.com.

  2. Select Try It Free.

    The Paramount+ homepage with the 'Try it free' button highlighted
  3. Select Continue.

    The Paramount+ signup process. The 'Continue' button is highlighted.
  4. Choose whether you want the Essential Plan or Premium Plan, then select the Select Plan button.

    The Paramount+ Pick Your Plan page with 'Select Plan' highlighted under the Premium Plan.
  5. Next, you're asked to create an account. Select Continue.

    Selecting continue.
  6. Enter your information and choose a password, then select Continue to proceed.

    Selecting Continue after entering account info.
  7. Enter your payment information. Select Continue.

    Selecting Continue after entering account info.
  8. Enter payment details.

    You won't be charged as long as the subtotal amount on this screen shows $0.00, but you will be charged at the end of the trial period if you don't cancel first.

    Payment method page.
  9. Select Start Paramount+ or if using Paypal, select Checkout with PayPal > Start Paramount+.

    Finishing payment and activating Paramount+ account.

Choose a Paramount+ Plan

There are two plans available from Paramount+, the Essential Plan and the Premium Plan.

The Essential Plan is the cheaper option and includes commercials embedded in on-demand videos, while the Premium Plan removes them. However, even if you pay for the commercial-free version of Paramount+, the commercials are not removed from the live CBS stream and appear in a few shows.

Both plans offer tens of thousands of movies and TV episodes, NFL on CBS, and 24/7 national news. With the Premium plan, you can watch your local CBS station live and download shows to watch later.

If you decide you'd rather have the ad-free version or switch back to the one with ads, you can do so at any time after you subscribe. Ready to quit? Cancel Paramount+ in a few steps.

How to Use Paramount+

To use Paramount+, you need a high-speed internet connection and a compatible device. The most accessible options are to watch it on your computer with your favorite web browser or your phone, but Paramount+ also supports devices like Roku and Amazon Fire TV. You can also cast Paramount+ from your phone to your TV from Android or iOS.​

What Content Does Paramount+ Offer?

Paramount+ competes with other live television streaming services like Sling TV, YouTube TV, and DirecTV Now, but on a smaller scale. While they provide dozens, or even hundreds, of channels, they have a price tag to match.

Paramount+ pulls from its parent company's catalog, which includes programming from channels like BET, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, Smithsonian Channel, and TV Land, as well as Paramount Pictures films.

ViacomCBS has a massive library of shows. For instance, you can watch the entire run of Cheers, and every Star Trek series, on Paramount+. While those shows initially aired on other networks, CBS is the one that owns them. Other popular programs include BET's Real Husbands of Hollywood, Comedy Central's Chappelle's Show, and Nickelodeon's Rugrats.

The weak point of most live television streaming services is local network television, which is usually available in a handful of limited markets. Paramount+ is unique in this instance since it's available in 200+ markets across the United States. So if you can't find an online streaming service that provides a local network, there's a good chance that Paramount+ has coverage where you live.

In addition to your local CBS affiliate, Paramount+ also provides a stream of CBSN, which is CBS's 24/7 live news channel.

How Many Shows Can You Watch at the Same Time on Paramount+?

When you watch a show on Paramount+, whether on the live feed or on-demand, it's a stream. The service limits the number of streams that can be active at any one time, so even if you have Paramount+ on multiple devices, there's a limit to how many you can use at once.

Paramount+ allows up to three streams at once, and those streams apply to all the devices you own and any video you stream.

That means you can watch a live stream of your local CBS affiliate on your computer at the same time someone else uses the same account to cast an on-demand episode to your television. You can mix and match devices and live or on-demand content, but you're always limited to three streams at once.

How Fast Does Your Internet Need to Be to Watch Paramount+?

Paramount+ requires a high-speed internet connection, and the quality of the video varies depending on its speed.

The minimum speeds recommended for Paramount+ are:

  • 800+ Kbps to stream on a mobile device.
  • 1.5+ Mbps to stream live television or on-demand video to a computer or a device like Amazon Fire TV or Roku.
  • 4+ Mbps to stream Big Brother Live feeds.

Big Brother Live uses four simultaneous video streams, which requires more bandwidth than usual.

Does Paramount+ Offer Any Options or Special Features?

While Paramount+ is a ViacomCBS streaming service, it offers the option to add Showtime content for an additional fee. This option is likely because CBS owns Showtime, so adding premium Showtime content to Paramount+ is a natural fit.

Paramount+ add on options.

How to Watch Live Television on Paramount+

The main focus of Paramount+ is providing an online feed of your local CBS station, which means you can use the service to watch CBS on your computer, phone, or on your television with the right hardware.

To watch live television on Paramount+:

  1. Navigate to www.paramountplus.com.

  2. Move your mouse over Live TV.

    The Paramount+ website.
  3. Select CBS (Local Station) to watch your local CBS channel, CBSN (24/7 News) to watch a live feed of CBSN, CBS Sports HQ to watch sports news, or ET Live to watch entertainment news.

    Watch live tv on Paramount+.

    While the video player has a pause button when you watch Paramount+ on your computer, you can't pause live television with the service.

Does Paramount+ Have On Demand or a DVR?

While the main focus of Paramount+ is live television, it also includes on-demand content. The selection is limited to the current season for most shows on the air, but full seasons and even complete series are available for some older shows.​

In addition to current series and older shows, Paramount+ has some exclusive content. For instance, the only place you can watch Star Trek: Discovery is on Paramount+. The Good Fight, which is a spin-off of The Good Wife, is also exclusive to Paramount+.

Paramount+ doesn't have a digital video recorder (DVR) feature, so the only way to watch a show you missed is to wait for it to appear in the on-demand section.

To watch an on-demand television show or movie on Paramount+:

  1. Navigate to www.paramountplus.com.

  2. Select Shows to reveal a list of available series, and then choose the one you want to watch.

    Select Shows to see all available programs.
  3. Select Watch Now to immediately jump into the show, or scroll down and select a specific episode that you want to watch.

    Paramount+ on demand and exclusives.

    You can pause on-demand content, and if you leave and come back, it picks up where you left off. You can also select a spot on the video timeline to fast forward, but if you try to skip past a commercial, the commercial plays automatically.

Can You Rent Movies on Paramount+?

Some live television streaming services provide pay-per-view and rental content, but Paramount+ doesn't. There is a selection of complimentary on-demand movies available, and you get access to more if you add Showtime to your subscription.

Movies on Paramount+.

If you're looking to rent a recent release, you can do so through non-subscription services like Vudu, Amazon, and many other online sources.

FAQ
  • How much does Paramount+ (formerly CBS All Access) cost?

    The Limited Commercials plan starts at $5.99 a month or $59.99 annually. The Commercial Free Plan is $9.99 monthly or $99.99 annually.

  • How do I cancel Paramount+ (formerly CBS All Access)?

    Most subscribers can cancel their Paramount+ subscriptions through the Paramount+ website or their streaming device. Uninstalling the app does not cancel your subscription.

  • Is Paramount+ (formerly CBS All Access) free if I have Amazon Prime?

    While Amazon Prime does offer a 7-day free trial for Paramount+, the subscription is not free. To sign up for a free trial, go to amazon.com/channels, select the Paramount+ channel, and choose the Limited Commercials option.

  • Is CBS All Access going away?

    No. However, the name changed. On March 4, 2021, CBS All Access was rebranded as Paramount+. If you were a CBS All Access subscriber, you are now a Paramount+ subscriber.

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