The Paramount+ streaming service is finally getting the upgrade viewers have been requesting since it launched more than a year ago. It is following streaming rivals in introducing a two tier structure for subscribers, with a new premium plan offering 4K HDR (Dolby Vision) visuals and Dolby Atmos sound.
It will also introduce an ad-supported next year.
The picture and sound quality has always been an issue with purists in the UK. Paramount+ is pretty much the only paid platform that only offers shows and films in HD. It also launched with just stereo audio available, although some programming is now available in 5.1 surround sound.
This is in stark contrast with the US version of the service, which has offered a premium subscription tier for a while.
Now though, the platform is rolling out a similar tiered subscription structure to other regions, and while the UK is not one of those on the initial wave, it is believed that it will get the upgrade sooner than later.
"Following the launch of the Mobile plan in Mexico and Brazil, the introduction of the premium and ad-supported plans will give us the ability to better serve different consumer segments by providing multiple pricing options while also tapping into tremendous opportunities among our advertising and brand partners," said the international general manager for Paramount+, Marco Nobili (via Variety).
The premium tier will roll out in Australia, Brazil, Canada and Mexico from 16 November. As well as the boost in picture and sound quality, it will up the number of concurrent streams subscribers can access to four.
There will continue to be a standard plan too, with HD streaming.
An ad-supported tier will arrive in 2024.
Pricing for the new premium plan will be AU$13.99 per month, AU$124.99 for a year's subscription. That equates to around £7.25 and £65 respectively (at the current exchange rate).
The standard (only) version of Paramount+ in the UK currently sits at £6.99 per month and £69.90 per annum.
It is likely that UK subscribers will have to pay a significant premium for the, ahem, premium service when it arrives.