WWE Network: details, launch info, names of shows, more (updated)
Wednesday, 08 January 2014 19:36
By Josh Nason
It's official -- the WWE Network
is coming, set to launch on Monday, February 24th. The world's largest pro wrestling organization made the presentation Wednesday night at the annual CES event in Las Vegas, NV.
Here are the big highlights:
- The network will be $9.99/month with a six-month commitment. Fans can sign up for a one-week free trial starting on Feb. 24th at 9 AM EST. It officially launches with the RAW post-show at 11:05 PM EST that night.
- All 12 WWE pay-per-views will move to the network, starting with Wrestlemania 30.
- All past WWE, WCW, and ECW pay-per-views will be available on-demand.
- The network will feature original shows like Legend House (reality show featuring retired wrestlers), Wrestlemania Rewind (looking back at specific matches), Countdown (a rankings/list-style show), Monday Night War: WWE vs. WCW, and more. Legends House begins in April.
- NXT and Superstars will be on the network.
- 30-minute pre and post shows for RAW and Smackdown will be part of the network, and a daily live studio show will also launch.
- In total, over 1500 hours of video on demand will be available at launch, including encore airings of RAW, Smackdown, and Main Events. Classic matches "uncut and uncensored" will also be available.
- The network will be available on all devices like PS3, Xbox 360, Roku, smartphones, desktops, laptops, and more. Coming soon: Xbox One, select smart TVs and more.
- Using the WWE app, fans will have access to a second screen experience for live events and original shows.
- WWE will sell a limited amount of sponsorship and ads. Most shows will air commercial free.
- MLB Advanced Media will help power the network, including video stream infrastructure, app development and operational support. They count ESPN as one of their clients. As someone that works in Internet performance, this is a great partnership.
- The network will not immediately be available around the world, and is scheduled to launch in the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong and the Nordics by the end of 2014 to early 2015.
The presentation featured Steve Austin, Triple H, Stephanie McMahon, Shawn Michaels, Michael Cole, and several key office personnel discussing the Network. Social media reaction was extremely positive, and the overwhelming consensus was that the network already blows the UFC Fight Pass offering in its current state away.
Dave Meltzer and Bryan Alvarez are in Las Vegas and attended the presentation. Tune into Wrestling Observer Radio later tonight for more insight and details.