Media brands have become too fixated on subscription models, according to the head of Germany’s ProSiebenSat.1, but he still plans on launching a subscription version of the company’s new Joyn app.

Speaking at DMEXCO in Cologne, CEO Max Conze extolled the virtues of the free app that ProSiebenSat.1 launched this summer, packed with channels and with programmes and livestreams accessible in just a couple of touches.

“Some people may say that’s very simple and obvious,” he acknowledged, but when people understand they can “in an app that really works, access all of television in a way that is digital and can do that on any device, I think that's quite compelling”.

And the initial signs are that consumers agree. “It’s early days, but we’ve launched this thing two and a half months ago; it’s had three million downloads, four million plus users and 10 million plus visitors,” he reported.

It’s important that the app is free, Conze added. “I think the world has gotten a bit too obsessed with subscription models and keeps forgetting that advertising is a great business model”. Businesses that want to make their products known need a place to advertise and “we offer that place bigger than anyone else”.

Nonetheless, Conze also plans on launching a subscription version of Joyn at some point with a lighter ad load and more original content unavailable on the free version.

He sees the new app, in whatever version, as crucial to ProSiebenSat’s direction, recounting an anecdote about a father and young son together watching the hit programme The Masked Singer, and when the youngster is packed off to bed he asks if he can keep watching on Joyn.

“I just thought if we can win the 14-year-olds, or the 10-year-olds, watching what we do on Joyn when they go to bed then I think we will win in the future.”

Sourced from WARC