Fox News viewers love Fox News. Now the network will find out if they are willing to pay for more of it.
In a first-of-its-kind test for the cable news market, Fox News said on Thursday that its stand-alone streaming service will debut next month, with subscribers paying about $65 a year.
The product, called Fox Nation and set to become available on Nov. 27, is a bid to bring the channel’s programming into the digital realm that has increasingly lured audiences away from traditional TV.
Whether Fox News devotees come along is an open question. The median age in the Fox News audience is roughly 65, according to Nielsen, a demographic that is more likely than younger viewers to stick with meat-and-potatoes cable and satellite packages.
There is also the price — $5.99 a month or $64.99 a year — which would come on top of a regular cable subscription. Unlike HBO Now, which allows stand-alone access to all HBO programming, Fox Nation will not overlap with any shows included on Fox News’s cable broadcast.
Instead, the network is producing a slate of new series exclusive to the streaming service, which will be commercial free. Among the offerings: a true-crime series hosted by Mark Fuhrman, the former detective who figured in the O. J. Simpson murder trial; “What Made America Great,” a history program with the “Fox & Friends” host Brian Kilmeade; and “The First Family,” described as a look at “the Trump family beyond the headlines.” (Eric Trump, the president’s son, is on board for the pilot episode.)
Fox Nation’s cost is roughly comparable to other networks’ web-only subscription products, like CBS All Access, which has more than 2.5 million customers. ESPN Plus, which began in April, has about a million subscribers, who pay $4.99 a month.
The marketplace for streaming TV is growing, and industry analysts say Fox Nation is one sign of Lachlan Murdoch’s efforts to modernize his family’s media empire. Fox is selling most of its entertainment assets to the Walt Disney Company, in a deal expected to be completed next year, and Mr. Murdoch, the elder son of Rupert Murdoch, is shifting focus to news and sports.
Fox News is not lacking for viewers, even as other TV brands struggle to retain audiences. The network’s prime-time shows, with hosts like Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson, dominate their cable-news competition. Coverage of the Trump administration has helped lift the channel’s Nielsen ratings to some of the highest levels in its two-decade history.
In a statement announcing when the service will debut, the Fox News executive John Finley said Fox Nation was aimed at “loyal superfans.” The network has pointed to heavy online traffic on FoxNews.com and the Fox News Facebook page as evidence that online-only offerings can appeal to its audience.
CNN has a streaming service, CNNgo, which offers some free original programming but also requires an existing cable subscription. NBC News announced a new streaming network, NBC News Signal, this week, with a launch scheduled for next year.
Fox News plans to market Fox Nation by offering branded products to early subscribers — including a wristwatch, a baseball cap, engraved drink glasses and a Fox Nation Founder Challenge Coin.