ESPN goes with 'plus' branding for streaming service

An MLB game every day throughout the season, totaling more than 180.

The network opted to name the service "ESPN+" which is read as "ESPN plus". ESPN also promises PGA golf coverage, Grand Slam tennis matches and global sports like rugby and cricket will be part of its monthly streaming package.

Notably, the $4.99 per month price of admission will not include access to ESPN's eight television channels.

If you want to survive in the post-cable world, you're going to need a standalone streaming app - one that doesn't require you to sign into your non-existent cable provider to watch content. ESPN+ will also be available through ESPN.com.

Disney's ESPN has for several years now fended off suggestions that the longtime cash cow is losing its sway among sports viewers as subscribers drop off from the network.

Disney and ESPN have yet to announce which platforms will get the service, but considering that its WatchESPN app spanned almost every conceivable Smart TV platform, streaming video player and mobile operating system, there's little doubt ESPN+ will be available anywhere and everywhere you now watch streaming content. Comparable streaming and subscription services for leagues like the NFL, MLB and National Basketball Association cost around $115-200 per year. "They will get all of that as a part of a completely re-imagined, increasingly personalized ESPN App that provides easy, one-stop access to everything ESPN offers", said ESPN President James Pitaro in a statement. ESPN+ is also part of Disney's effort to roll out more of its own paid streaming content. Finally, ESPN+ will offer coverage from 31 PGA Tour events, hundreds of matches from Grand Slam tennis tournaments, and hundreds of rugby and cricket matches.

RUGBY & CRICKET - HUNDREDS OF MATCHES FROM INTERNATIONAL RUGBY AND CRICKET: ESPN+ will serve rugby and cricket fans in the US with more of their beloved sports, throughout the year.

NHL - One free game per day (again local blackouts apply) with the NHL.TV package available for purchase. An additional MLB.TV out-of-market package costs an extra $24.99 a month.

Outside of the subscription offers, the new ESPN app will include sports news, highlights and scores, the aforementioned linear ESPN TV networks to authenticated subscribers, and ESPN Audio. The other, a family-friendly service filled with original and licensed programming from across Lucasfilm, Marvel and Pixar, is expected to launch in 2019.

Vanessa Coleman

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