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Nickelodeon breaks out of cable’s cage, preps standalone streaming service

Nickelodeon, which serves as home to popular kid’s shows like iCarly and SpongeBob SquarePants, is following the lead of networks like HBO and CBS – though for a very different audience – with plans to launch its own subscription video service, reports Variety.

The service would give parents the opportunity to access tons of children’s programming for a small, yet-to-be-confirmed fee without needing a cable or satellite TV subscription. That’s a huge leap of faith for parent company Viacom, but perhaps a very smart decision. Children’s programming is one of the most popular genres among cord-cutters, and one that competitive video streaming services like Netflix and Amazon focus heavily on. Get ‘em young when it comes to the new TV, it seems.

Related: From HBO to CBS, the dream of a la carte TV is coming true one stream at a time

And it makes sense – anyone who has kids knows that a toddler isn’t going to happily sit through a one-minute commercial break every few minutes – standard practice on regular network television. And while they are growing up pretty tech-savvy, most kids either don’t know how to skip through commercials, or don’t understand the very concept of having to do so. On-demand is the way to go with the young’uns.

Interestingly, Nickelodeon will reportedly be focusing mainly on the mobile side – presumably for parents who are looking to entertain their kids while out and about using a smartphone or tablet. Though there’s no reason the content wouldn’t be just as easily accessible on a computer or large screen TV.

That said, more details, including a name for the service and what programming will be made available there, are to be revealed next month.

This new business model is promising for those who have been craving TV packages that are more customized. But one must wonder if the better option would be to partner up with a Netflix or Hulu or Amazon and let these guys take care of the on demand needs. Sure, the more a la carte options customers have, the better. But at some point, those costs will add up and customers will come full circle, looking once again for a one-stop-shop solution that’s tailored to them, and offers exactly the channels they want. Surely, the industry can meet somewhere in the middle.