NBCUniversal explores making streamer Peacock free for all


NBCUniversal is planning to give the ad-supported version of OTT TV service Peacock away for free to all, making it the first US media giant to offer a completely free streaming offering, according to a report by CNBC.

Comcast had previously planned to offer the new streaming service free of charge to its own cable and broadband subscribers.

However, according to NBCU-owned CNBC, it is now mulling a plan that would see it make the ad-supported version of the service available to all, whether they are signed up to a Comcast service or not, with an ad-free version of the service also available for a monthly fee.

The rationale for the move would be to extend the reach of the service and maximise the advertising opportunity, according to CNBC.

Other new streaming services will be available free of charge to selected groups of customers. Disney+ will be free to Verizon wireless subscribers in the US for one year, while the new Apple TV+ service is available free of charge to people who purchase a new Apple device.

NBCU has been rapidly ramping up efforts for Peacock over recent months, ordering a raft of new shows and snatching back rights to Amy Poehler comedy Parks And Recreation from Netflix.

In October, the company rejigged its senior management team by naming Matt Strauss to head up the forthcoming streamer. As part of the changes, NBCU moved its TV studios, Universal Television and Universal Content Productions into a single business unit under Bonnie Hammer, with former Comcast executive Strauss appointed to take on the remit for Peacock.

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