Jeff Bewkes described the deal as a means of making all of his company's networks, and eventually all of television, more like HBO. And AT&T's head made a similar argument.
AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, Comcast and others bid more than $20 billion below the asking price in the FCC's latest auction.
CBS is working to build up its subscription service, even as the company's network TV programming sees top ratings.
Although the network has not reached a deal with the new streaming service and has its own CBS All Access, CBS plans to be a part of the platform.