TORONTO , July 31, 2014 /CNW/ - Rogers Communications and WWE (WWE) today announced a historic 10-year broadcast and multimedia agreement, making Rogers the exclusive distributor of WWE's flagship programming in Canada through 2024. The deal extends WWE's current programming on Sportsnet 360 and includes the right to distribute WWE Network as a premium linear channel, with a preview beginning August 12 .
Rogers will be the exclusive distribution partner of all WWE pay-per-view events throughout Canada and will sponsor an application to the CRTC to bring the popular WWE Network to Canada . Starting August 12 , a preview of WWE Network content, including live WWE pay-per-view events, groundbreaking original series, live in-ring action, reality shows and a video-on-demand library, will be available on a subscription basis on Rogers Channel 512. Rogers will offer this WWE Network content preview subscription to all cable, satellite and IPTV providers across Canada .
Fans in Canada will receive more WWE programming than ever before through Rogers' cable and digital assets. Highlights from the new deal also include national rights for Raw®, SmackDown® and Main Event® on Sportsnet 360, Sportsnet NOW and Rogers Anyplace TV.
I'm likely not renewing. I love the idea of it, but I'm just not watching enough. Some good original programming would hook me back in. Legends House has been my favorite thing so far. And NXT is still on Hulu Plus (even the specials, just not live), which I'm also paying for.
It may be one of those things where I buy a half year every year (if I can get that same $60 price), since I'd likely buy Wrestlemania anyway.
EDIT: Oops! Didn't realize this thread was Canada-specific. Ah well.
(edited by SchippeWreck on 31.7.14 1236) Everything is awesome.
I'll have to see what the methods of ordering it are, as I don't get TV through Rogers and have no intention of switching my TV provider to Rogers.
I'm a bit worried that Rogers might 'offer' the Network to other providers, but at terms that simply aren't realistic to them, to force those providers to decline to accept it and let Rogers leverage itself to try to force people to change if they want the Network. As an example of that, the ability to stream programming on the sports station's TSN.ca website was recently made into 'TSN Go', where you have to sign in to be able to watch on your computer. It's great if you use Bell or Rogers, but smaller (and cheaper) regional providers don't have access. I'm fortunate to have a smaller regional provider, and that's the only reason I still get things like 'unlimited internet' that people in Ontario and Alberta simply don't get access to because their smaller regional providers were all choked out by the Big Three.
So as much as I'd like to get the WWE Network, and as much money as I'd save, colour me cautious at this news. If I can get it simply via an app or on my computer, great. If I need to jump through Rogers hoops to get it on their own terms, well...
*The company signed a ten-year partnership with Rogers Communications in Canada, which would include television, digital rights, and the network. The network will debut as a regular television station, similar to HBO, starting on 8/12. The belief is that there will be one free week of viewing and then it will be offered for $11.99 per month, which will be awkward in that country because WWE is pushing $9.99 so hard on television. The offerings will be the same live stream as on the American network, and it will have some archives, but not nearly as much as on the streaming service. There will be a streaming version of the network available in Canada at some point, currently scheduled for a 2015 launch by Rogers. What is key here is that consumers are far more likely to subscribe to a television station than a streaming service, at least today. If Canada does well, it could lead to major changes, because Canada is a good test market for the U.S., but with less risk in experimentation than in the U.S. There are also two other notes. When the WWE announces the network numbers, it will include all television subscribers in Canada. In addition, with the significant new contract, which Vince McMahon said, “It’s basically an offer that we couldn’t turn down.” Not only does it help the company bottom line, it has its repercussions on the UFC side. The UFC’s contract with Rogers is coming due and after spending big on the NHL and WWE, it will be interesting to see how that affects the price they offer.
*The Network will be on Rogers Cable on Ch. 512, an HD-only channel, so it appears it will not be able to be accessed by customers who don’t have HD. Rogers will be making its own deal with the various other Canadian cable providers to have access to the WWE network. A key is that if someone only has HD on one television in their home, that would be the only TV they could watch the network on.
*Regarding whether moving to television, like in Canada, will be done elsewhere, Vince McMahon said:“Canadians, they tend to look at things a little differently and it’s an overall mix. I don’t know that we’re going to have that anywhere else. We know we might when someone combines our core television rights with network revenue. It’s interesting, though, that we have the flexibility to be able to do that as it relates to the network, but I don’t know that’s necessarily going to happen anywhere else in the world. It could when you combine the two.”
*The Canadian television deal is for Raw, Smackdown and Main Event on Sportsnet 360. So that would mean Main Event would either air first on the network and later on television, or simultaneously if moved to a Tuesday night time slot. NXT had been on television in Canada, but is not involved in the new television deal, likely being a network exclusive.
So to recap, the Network is launching via a cable provider that lots of people (like me!) don't have, it will cost more and have less content than the American version, and they're taking NXT off Sportsnet in favour of Main Event. There's nothing good about any of that.
I pay roughly $11/month Canadian for WWE Network, plus $5/month Canadian for my VPN service. So it's a bit more expensive but not much - plus I can access US Netflix if I want. But I had a really miserable experience watching the last PPV and was hoping that taking the VPN out of the picture might help matters.
Originally posted by KJames199Rogers will be making its own deal with the various other Canadian cable providers to have access to the WWE network.
This is the important part for me (and apparently you too). I contacted my cable company and heard back from them today that they still haven't heard anything about acquiring the Network, so I guess I remain in limbo for now.
As for Cubs' question, I don't know how much a VPN service would cost, but just strictly for the Network with the exchange rate, the American one would wind up costing us around $11 Canadian. So that in itself would be cheaper than the Rogers version. If my cable company is left out in the cold by Rogers in the end, I might have to look into finding out how I can get the service from the US, because there's no way I'm going to be switching to Rogers cable.
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