Photo Credit: FC Barcelona
Barça now has its own streaming service: Barça TV+. FC Barcelona — the football club that Lionel Messi plays for — launched Barça TV+ on Wednesday in Spain, with over 1,000 hours of content in three languages, English, Spanish, and Catalan. It's available worldwide on mobile, PC, and TV, thanks to the club's official website and the app, which has cast support for Chromecast, Apple TV, Roku, and Fire TV. Barça TV+ costs EUR 2.49 per month (about Rs. 210) after a 7-day free trial, or EUR 14.99 per year (about Rs. 1,270). The annual Barça TV+ membership comes with additional benefits. A free tier will offer access to limited content.
As for content, Barça TV+ will offer originals just like other streaming services. Among them are “Ready! Antoine Griezmann's challenges”, wherein the French star will go up against other sportspersons. “Origins” will look at Barça players with family and friends' interviews. On “Discover Barcelona”, players will tour their favourite spots in the club's hometown: Barcelona. “The Album” will put a spotlight on FC Barcelona legends' time at the club, and “What's Next?” will look at their life after retirement. “Dare to Play” puts a personal angle on Barça Women. And “The 9” is all about strikers.
Since Barça TV+ is a streaming service from a football club, it will naturally have a lot of football too. All first-team games will be available delayed or on-demand post-match. Barça B, Barça Women, and other sports and youth teams' games will be available live. Sitting alongside will be every game from the last five seasons and 65 big games, including UEFA Champions League finals that Barça played in London, Paris, Rome and Berlin, and several Copa del Rey finals. Additionally, Barça TV channel — launched over 20 years ago — is now available in English too.
Alongside the launch of Barça TV+, FC Barcelona also unveiled a new “Premium” tier of the Culers membership. That is part of the annual Barça TV+ subscription. It grants you a personalised membership card, discounts on tickets and at the online store, special offers from club's partners, entries into weekly draws and competitions, and of course — access to all of Barça TV+.
For Barça members — separate from Culers, it costs EUR 185 annually (about Rs. 15,675) — all of the aforementioned stuff, be it Barça TV+ or Culers Premium membership, is free of cost. Supporters club members get 50 percent off.
Barça TV+ spent over 18 months in development, the club told Variety. It will target its 350 million online following, which Barça claims it interacts with more than any other sports team in the world. With the launch of its own streaming service, Barça is trying to cut out the middleman — other streaming service partners — and help boost its services revenue.
“Barça TV+ is the key piece, the jewel in the crown, in the club's new digital strategy and, without a doubt, the best way to reach all of our fans around the world,” FC Barcelona board member Dídac Lee said in a prepared statement. “This is a unique product that will offer fans a new way to consume Barça content, wherever they want and whenever they want; exclusive, different content that will be available on demand.”
“FC Barcelona want to remain a benchmark club both on and off the pitch and continue to be the leading sports entity in the generation of revenue,” FC Barcelona's VP commercial Oriol Tomàs added. “With this in mind, the creation of this new digital products ecosystem opens up a new way of doing business for us, which we hope will become one of the main sources of regular income for the club in the coming years, helping us to continue growing and remain competitive in an increasingly sophisticated environment.”
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