CBS All Access Review: Is It Worth Your Money?

cbs all access review

CBS All Access is actually one of my favorite streaming services. In this CBS All Access review we will look at why it’s one of my favorites, what the service has to offer, any special features, and the overall benefit of CBS All Access. The reason I love CBS All Access is because it filters out a lot of the noise. I am one of those people that will troll Netflix for hours. I can find hundreds of things I wouldn’t mind watching, but having them all at my fingertips leads me to look to see if anything is better or if there is something I want to watch more. CBS All Access only offers TV shows, and only CBS-hosted/owned shows, at that.

There is a nice mix of currently airing and what they call “classic” shows, which are just shows that aren’t really airing anymore. You also have access to a variety of specials and awards shows that have aired. Keep reading our CBS All Access review for the full details.


What is CBS All Access?

CBS All Access is an on-demand streaming service that works over the internet. It does not require a cable subscription. You can use it on most streaming devices, from wherever you are (as long as you have internet). Primarily, the service provides subscribers with direct access to on-demand streaming of select CBS TV shows. There are more than 8,500 episodes available to stream! Our full CBS All Access review below has more info.


What are the Main CBS All Access Features?


CBS All Access has a lot to offer. Beyond the fewer ads and the option of removing ads altogether, CBS offers the option for live streaming over 8,500 individual episodes, and the ability to watch on multiple devices. Key features include:

  • On-demand access to over 8,500 episodes of hit TV shows
  • Original series only available on All Access like The Good Fight and Star Trek: Discovery
  • Watch on-demand on your own schedule
  • Watch over the internet – from anywhere!
  • Choose from limited commercials or NO commercials (2 different plans)
  • Watch LIVE NFL games when games air on CBS!
  • Watch live streaming of CBS (in select markets)
  • Watch on nearly any device
  • Watch exclusive CBS All Access Originals
  • There is a free 7-day trial available

You won’t be tethered to any one specific device as you can access CBS All Access on your computer, phone/tablet, or devices like Roku, Chromecast, Apple TV, or Xbox. No matter how you choose to watch CBS All Access, the setup is pretty much the same. It’s easy to find the shows you’re looking for, and it’s easy to search for shows.

If you live in one of over one hundred cities you can watch CBS All Access live streaming. You will have the opportunity to watch whatever is airing on CBS. If you’re not in one of these cities they will be adding more, so it’s only a matter of time until it’s available to you. Shows tend to be added to the network shortly after they air on TV, so if you have to wait, it shouldn’t be for long.

Many of the shows offer full seasons. The current shows offering full seasons include Madam Secretary and Scorpion. Classic shows have full seasons available, as well. And now, CBS will also be offering All Access originals including a new Star Trek series.

The only real downside also has to do with the episodes. Unlike a streaming service like HBO or Showtime, where you get every episode of every show, with CBS, some shows offer you all the episodes, and other shows, like Code Black or Criminal Minds, only offer anywhere from four to seven episodes at any given time. In some cases, the episodes don’t go in order. For instance, if a new season show is available there might be two or three episodes from the beginning of the show, and then a few more of the most recent episodes.


How Much Does CBS All Access Cost?

How much is CBS All Access? Not very much, considering what it gives you!

Ultimately, it depends on if you want to sit through commercials or not. If you’re patient and don’t mind some commercials (you’ll pay less than watching traditional television) you can pay just $5.99 per month. This is a phenomenal deal, especially if you watch a lot of CBS shows. If you hate commercials, you end up paying $9.99 for the commercial-free plan. Canceling is as easy as logging into your account and clicking the cancel button. It really is a hassle free process. There is not currently a CBS All Access gift card at this time.

If you’re on the fence you can make use of the CBS All Access free trial. Like a lot of streaming services these days, the CBS All Access free trial lasts for a week. That gives you a few days to watch as many of the shows as you want, and really get a good feel for the service. Use the time and see how much you’re actually watching the service.


CBS All Access Review: Bottom Line

For as little as $6 per month, CBS All Access is an amazing deal. It offers a ton of on-demand content, plus live NFL games at times, and live CBS content for some people. It’s a great way to stay current on CBS shows, and the quality in the streaming service rivals the best of them. If you’re undecided, try the free trial and see how you like the service.

Ashtyn Evans

Ashtyn Evans

Ashtyn Evans is a screenwriter and freelance writer from the Midwest. She owns nearly a thousand films on Amazon and holds streaming subscriptions to everything from HBO and Hulu to Showtime and Starz. Email her at
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Ashtyn Evans

9 Comments on "CBS All Access Review: Is It Worth Your Money?"

  1. Has “CBS All Access” gotten better? Will it get better before “Star Trek Discovery” debuts?

    Here is the reason that I am asking: I tried it in Winter/Spring 2016. I paid the $5.99 and it sucked! The image was blurry when in rendered. The streaming paused frequently. No it was not me , not my devices, nor my router, nor my internet provider. I stream 4K Netflix, and HBO Go, and 4K YouTube, and have no problems. The picture quality of CBS All Access was awful.

    And to top that off, I was paying $6 , and still got commercials! The aforementioned paid-for streaming competition doesn’t have commercials!

    So I repeat my questions ……… Has “CBS All Access” gotten better? Will it get better before “Star Trek Discovery” debuts?


    • I haven’t experienced the performance issues with All Access, so I can’t speak to your experience there. The $6 version does still have commercials, but they do have a $9.99 commercial-free version now.

  2. CBS is so poor run, it’s amazing it’s still in business. Madam Secretary is our favorite show, but it almost never starts on time and so we are constantly missing the end. I don’t know how a station can so consistently mess up it’s schedule. No wonder HBO, Netflix and YouTube are running them out of business. I downloaded the app and it’s just as horrible. Total waste of money. I hope Netflix picks up Madam Secretary.

    • I also like Madam Secretary and this has happened to me as well. CBS airs many sporting events during the year (i.e. Golf,Football, etc), It is not the fault of CBS that these events run longer than expected. So I DVR a show that comes on after Madam Secretary to avoid this issues. Just a suggestion.

  3. You missed something.
    I tried to watch 3 of my most recently died shows and got a “subscribe to watch” button instead of watch
    I can watch any preceding episodes but not the new ones.
    Click on subscribe to watch and i get bc sent back to the main screen. I also agree with the 2 preceding posts but have suffered through the shoes for the most part (i have turned to other shows on channels that work a few times though)

  4. I tried the “limited commercial” version. That’s in quotes because the limit is 26 ads/commercials for an hour long show.

  5. Would sign up just to watch the new show “The Good Life”, but want to watch it on the big screen tv, supposedly my cable provider is not on the list. All of the other shows can be watched “on-demand”. Sucks!

  6. Kathelyn Bush | March 19, 2017 at 9:21 pm | Reply

    I loved the Good Wife….. and when I saw the first episode ofThe Good Fight I was so excited! But then when I realized that I could not watch it without “Paying” for it…….I was really upset. I already “PAY” for cable…… I will not pay “twice” to watch this show. Talk about GREED! I think CBS is making a big mistake. If this show fails, it won’t be because of the writing and actors, It will be because of CBS’ greed!

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