How to sign up for CBS All Access

CBS all access
(Image credit: CBS)

You can sign up for CBS All Access for free with a two-month-long trial, which is great news because the US TV network's streaming service costs a chunk of change if you want to watch its shows and movies.

CBS-exclusive shows include Star Trek: Discovery and Star Trek: Picard, as well as The Good Fight (spinoff of The Good Wife), a rebooted version of The Twilight Zone headlined by Jordan Peele, and new TV shows like Why Women Kill.

The rest of the CBS All Access streaming library packs classic shows like the original Star Trek, Cheers, Macgyver, Twin Peaks and CSI shows, as well as films from Paramount Pictures, MGM, and Sony Pictures. It also airs live TV events like NFL games and the Grammy Awards.

Like other streaming services, beyond the CBS All Access free trial, it comes in two tiers: one with advertisements and a slightly pricier level without ads. But unlike other major US networks, you can't get CBS All Access for free with a cable log-in.

CBS All Access streaming content service

CBS All Access streaming content service
Sign up for CBS All Access to watch thousands of films, shows, and shorts, including originals like Star Trek: Picard, Star Trek: Discovery, and The Good Fight. Prices vary, but most regions start at monthly prices that are less than Hulu or Netflix. Right now, you can get a free month-long trial – which can be extended to two months with the promo code 'ENJOY.'

CBS All Access price, availability and promo code

CBS All Access launched back in October 2014, but has steadily gained subscribers alongside the rise of other streaming services, as well as the debut of its original series beginning in late 2017. It's one of the few network streaming services that doesn't allow you to bypass a monthly fee if you have a US cable account log-in.

Officially, CBS All Access is only available in US and Canada, as well as Australia in a combined package with regional network 10 in a service called '10 All Access' that launched in December 2018. 

Outside the US, Canada and Australia? Try a VPN to connect to the CBS network.

In the US, CBS All Access is available in two price tiers: the first costs $5.99 per month with commercials, while the $9.99 tier is ad-free, though you can save 15% by signing up for a year in advance. It’s only available in Canada for CA$5.99, while 10 All Access in Australia costs AU$5.99 per month.

The service has a free trial, which had been 7 days by default. That’s been extended to a free month, though you’ll have to apply by April 23 to get the full length. You can also extend this trial period to two months by entering CBS All Access promo codes 'ENJOY' at checkout, per Mashable, though this can only be entered when subscribing on desktop.

How to sign up to CBS All Access

Navigate to the CBS All Access website and click the ‘Try It Free’ button to begin the sign-up process. If in the US, you can pick your plan here, then submit your personal and billing information to register. 

You can also sign up using the mobile app – keep in mind it appears just as ‘CBS’ in either the iOS App Store or Google Play Store. Follow the same steps as with desktop to get started.

The five best CBS All Access original shows

If you’re signing up for CBS All Access, you’re probably doing so to watch some of its exclusive shows. We’ve outlined what they are and why you’d want to watch below.

(Image credit: Netlfix)

Star Trek: Discovery

The first big CBS All Access exclusive is Star Trek: Discovery, the first new show in the Star Trek universe since Star Trek: Enterprise went off the air in 2005. This show, set about a decade before the original Star Trek series, follows the crew of the eponymous USS Discovery amid a brewing Klingon war and other interstellar threats and wonders. Three seasons are available to stream, with the inter-season Short Trek mini-episodes bridging the gaps.

(Image credit: CBS/Amazon Prime Video)

Star Trek: Picard

The newest CBS All Access exclusive, Star Trek: Picard, follows Patrick Stewart in his acclaimed role as USS Enterprise captain Jean-Luc Picard picking up decades after Star Trek: The Next Generation ended. After retiring from Starfleet in protest, Picard is drawn out by a new mystery, and must assemble a crew of new and old faces to prevent catastrophe.

A promo shot for the good fight

(Image credit: Amazon)

The Good Fight

The Good Fight is a spinoff of the legal drama The Good Wife that follows Diane Lockhart as she forges a new path taking on cases in the current political climate. Some characters carry over from the original show, though most of the commonality lies in the legal casework and social commentary that made The Good Wife a hit.

(Image credit: 10 / CBS)

The Twilight Zone

Filmmaker Jordan Peele (Get Out, Us) helms a reboot of the classic speculative fiction series The Twilight Zone. The new version features hour-long episodes that portray altered worlds similar to – and yet different from – our own. Think of it like a softer, thriller-esque Black Mirror.

(Image credit: CBS)

Why Women Kill

Why Women Kill is one of the first CBS All Access shows not based on a previous property or brand. The show follows three women across three different decades as they grapple with infidelity, societal conventions, and ultimately, murder. The star-studded show includes Lucy Liu, Ginnifer Goodwin, Alexandra Daddario, and Kirby Howell-Baptiste.

Is CBS All Access worth it?

Getting CBS All Access free for one month (or two months with the 'ENJOY' promo code) is long enough to get through these top five shows. However, CBS has a back catalogue of hit shows as well as new original programming coming out. It's enough to check in with what's available to stream every once in a while, even if you don't pay for it every month like you Netflix or Hulu.

That said, $4.99 (or $9.99 for ad-free in the US) is pricey for one network, and the fact that you can't bypass the monthly fee with a valid cable log-in (like you can using the NBC, Fox Now, and ABC streaming apps) kind of forces you into buying into CBS All Access, especially if you're looking to binge for all of the episodes of Picard.

Star Trek: Picard season 2: release date predictions, story, new cast members

David Lumb

David is now a mobile reporter at Cnet. Formerly Mobile Editor, US for TechRadar, he covered phones, tablets, and wearables. He still thinks the iPhone 4 is the best-looking smartphone ever made. He's most interested in technology, gaming and culture – and where they overlap and change our lives. His current beat explores how our on-the-go existence is affected by new gadgets, carrier coverage expansions, and corporate strategy shifts.