That much become clear this week when the latest streaming service, DirecTV Now, said it will launch Nov. 30 without Moonves’ CBS.
It’s at least the third streaming service — after Hulu’s proposed service and Sling TV’s current service — that the 67-year-old chief executive allowed to launch without his top-rated broadcast network.
Moonves is keeping CBS out of those streaming TV packages until those prospective partners pay the kind of moolah that Sony handed over last year to carry the Tiffany Network on its service.
Plus, as the only broadcaster with a standalone paid app, CBS is making the case that streamers need the network more than the network needs them.
Moonves can go all Sheldon Cooper with streaming companies, too, because he doesn’t have to hammer out a broader deal for allied cable channels.
For the moment, Moonves is in the driver’s seat.
CBS inked a hugely lucrative pact to be part of Sony’s PlayStation Vue streaming TV service — bagging an eye-popping $25 million guarantee in advance, one source told The Post.
PlayStation Vue launched in spring 2015.
CBS was able to command a huge fee from Sony — a new market entrant with no history of buying programming — which figured it would make back the advance after signing up millions of subscribers.
But those subs have yet to show up. Sony has signed up just 100,000, according to a June Bloomberg report.
The hold-up with DirecTV Now centers on Moonves wanting Sony-like money, pay-TV sources speculate.
That might be tough as DirecTV is well established in the marketplace.
A CBS spokesman declined to comment on ongoing negotiations.
CBS is believed to be looking for around $3 per subscriber per month — about half what it charges for its CBS All Access app, which carries full stacks of current programming as well as originals such as the “Star Trek” reboot.
S&P Global Market info suggests CBS commands $2.50 per month.
CBS will be a part of YouTube’s virtual cable bundle, Unplugged, which is launching early next year.
DirecTV Now is already launching with almost no profit margin. Independent research firm MoffettNathanson suggests the cost of putting together its $35 basic tier is $30 per month for the programming alone.“They’re running it pretty lean,” said Schaffler, “It begs the question: How much more is DirecTV Now going up and how quickly?”