CBS Sports HQ Service Hits the OTT Field

Sports news-themed streaming service enters an OTT sports category still fighting for fan acceptance

CBS has officially thrown its hat into the streaming sports ring with the launch Monday of its CBS Sports HQ sports news service.

 The free, ad-supported 24-hour streaming sports news network -- a collaboration between CBS Sports and CBS Interactive -- will offer sports news, highlights and analysis, said service officials. 

RELATED: CBS Launches Free Streaming News Service

The launch also comes several weeks before CBS and Turner Sports team for the annual “March Madness” men’s college basketball tournament.

CBS, which initially announced its plans for a sport-themed OTT service late last year, becomes the latest company to swing for the fences on the streaming sports digital field. Next up at bat will be ESPN, which plans to launch this Spring its ESPN Plus subscription service, which will feature thousands of live sports events along with sports news and highlights.

CBS Sports HQ also jumps into a sports streaming business still seeking to secure its footing with sports fans. A recent study from market research company YouGov and streaming research company Phoenix revealed that while sports fans want more sports available on digital platforms, their experiences thus far have left a lot to be desired.

Nearly three quarters of sports fans expect bad service from a streaming sports feed while watching a game, with 64% of fans expecting buffering, 42% expecting delays, and 32% expecting poor picture quality. 

As a result, more than 63% of sports fans are reluctant to sign-up or re-subscribe to live streaming platforms in 2018 due to technological problems affecting the signal, and 34% would think about cancelling the services giving them issues.

CBS Sports HQ hopes to counter some of those negative perceptions among sports fans beginning today.