The WWE Network is obviously the leader in wrestling, er sorry Sports Entertainment, content delivery. The problem with the network is that it is only WWE content, or content from companies they have bought out. This causes problems for wrestling fans that want to see more than just WWE content or content from companies that went out of business in the 80’s or 90’s. It seems that that is at least something they have a priority on changing over at the Connecticut based headquarters.
According to Wrestling Observer Radio, Dave Meltzer and Bryan Alvarez went over the points of this potential change to the WWE Network. There are plans to create four tiers for access to the digital service. Some are obviously more interesting than others.
Free (really free)- this tier is obviously the most limited of the bunch but it is the cheapest. At this level users would get access to clips and the WWE Network 24/7 live stream (which blacks out during PPV’s and other paid content). In other words, you are not going to be ripping off anything super entertaining at this level.
$4.99/month- This plan is only for phones and tablets and includes everything in the free package plus some extras. You get access to the big four pay per views each year- Royal Rumble, Wrestlemania, SummerSlam and Survivor Series. The rest of the PPV’s would be blocked on your account at this level. You will have access to five hours of WWE Network programming per month (limitations apply) and there would be heavy commercial insertion throughout.
$9.99/month – what is available now, all pay per views each month, Cruiserweight Classic and live episodes of NXT plus access to the video library.
$14.99/month- this plan gives you everything from the earlier packages (minus heavy commercials of the $4.99 plan) and the chance to vote on the WWE Hall of Fame entries, first access to purchase event tickets, access to second screen content (remember that?) and exclusive access to VIP meet and greets. This plan would also give you access to non-WWE programming that they are apparently working on bringing to the network.
About that non-WWE programming. I wrote up an article detailing how this would benefit the WWE and the WWE Network a while back. Available here.
Anyhow, if you are not in on it, WWE has been expressing great interest in grabbing the rights to the TNA tape library. This would give them unprecedented access to the history of big stars such as AJ Styles and Samoa Joe, along with Eric Young, Bobby Roode and Austin Aries (all in NXT).
Apparently there are rumors that Ring of Honor (ROH) is in the sights of WWE as far as tape library acquisition is concerned. This would expand their background access for many of the TNA stars, specifically Samoa Joe and a few others.
Source: Wrestling Observer Radio Show