It’s certainly a change of pace. Back in February 2014, the WWE Network launched and changed wrestling forever. Now all of a sudden wrestling fans had access to almost every WWE wrestling show they could possibly want and that hasn’t changed since. In the four and a half years since its debut, the WWE Network hasn’t changed much, though that lack of change may change when the year changes.
According to PWInsider.com, WWE is considering a tiered system for the WWE Network, which could come into play as early as next year. The current model only offers the single $9.99 a month option, though the new plan could include four different options at a variety of prices, one of which goes above the current price. Here is a set of options that were under consideration in 2016, though the potential upcoming tiers may be different:
2016’s Plan One – FREE, featuring five hours of archived material, five minute video clips, and a 24/7 live stream that would feature WWE content without PPVs, NXT and the Cruiserweight Classic. The idea would be that this would be a free service, featuring commercials, that would be available to watch on all devices. Think Hulu’s free content without a subscription.
2016’s Plan Two – Priced $4.99 a month would feature the WWE Network as it currently exists, with the exception of NXT and its Takeover specials, would feature limited commercials and access to only the “Big Four” WWE PPV events. The tier would also feature a VOD proponent that would add all new WWE “live events” (assuming this would mean Raw, Smackdown, etc.) 30 days after they air. This content would only be available for those watching via phones and tablets.
2016’s Plan Three – Priced at the still-current WWE Network price of $9.99 would offer the WWE Network as it currently exists, except WWE NXT would air live every week (similar to how Raw and Smackdown currently air). This would also have limited commercials.
2016’s Plan Four – Priced at $14.99, this version would feature a commercial free version of the WWE Network with all the current bells and whistles, a live version of NXT, a weekly Cruiserweight Classic series, and “access to independent wrestling content such as TNA & Ring of Honor” plus additional “Fan Perks” including early ticket ordering access, the right to vote in the WWE Hall of Famer, “offline” content download, small group online chats, exclusive second screen content and invites to exclusive in-person VIP meet-ups.
As long as we still get stuff like this.
Opinion: As a day one subscriber of the WWE Network, I would absolutely sign up for the top tier, just for the sake of continuing the amazing level of content that the WWE Network has offered. It really is the greatest gift ever for a wrestling fan and the idea of having more content is one of the coolest things that could happen. You know, in case the thousands of shows already available aren’t enough.
Which of these tiers would you buy? What else do you want from the Network? Let us know in the comments below.
Thomas Hall has been a wrestling fan for over thirty years and has seen over 50,000 wrestling matches. He has also been a wrestling reviewer since 2009 with over 5,000 full shows covered. You can find his work at kbwrestlingreviews.com, or check out his Amazon author page with 28 wrestling books. His latest book is the the Complete 2003 Smackdown Reviews.
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