Top Peacock Tier Adds Live NBC Affiliates from 210 Markets

NBCUniversal’s OTT video streaming service Peacock is adding local NBC affiliate channels from 210 markets to its $9.99/month Premium Plus tier. The 24/7 feature is phasing in gradually, with all stations scheduled to be live by November 30, when subscribers will see a homepage tile that syncs the local broadcast feed, offering everything from NBC hits like “Law & Order” and “Saturday Night Live.” Integration of a live option puts Peacock on a more direct footing with Paramount+, which offers live CBS affiliate feeds.

“Paramount claims its live TV stream reaches 99 percent of the United States, with 206 markets currently listed on its website,” according to The Verge.

Deadline calls the general trend of adding live TV “a significant leap forward for local TV stations in the streaming era,” emphasizing “the significance of that viewing of live station programming, especially since sports and news are significant elements to the overall offering.” Hulu, Deadline notes, “also features a selection of local stations.”

“Aside from a good old antenna, this is now one of the cheapest ways to receive a live, linear feed of local NBC stations,” writes Variety, pointing out that might not last, as “streaming TV services continue to raise prices on a regular basis, with Sling TV’s recent hike serving as the latest example.” Those bundles, however, “contain much broader entertainment options” than any single linear station offers.

“Now the question becomes how long it’ll be until Peacock increases its own prices,” posits The Verge, which nonetheless feels for households “that are big on NBC’s shows and overall programming, maybe this will be enough to pull some of them away from Sling, YouTube TV, and Hulu with Live TV.”

With its emphasis on sports, since launching in 2020 Peacock has managed to attract just over 15 million paying subscribers, “far behind many rivals, but NBCU and Comcast execs have said they are pleased with its progress, with monthly active user levels already at the threshold of initial projections of 30 million to 35 million by 2025,” Deadline writes. The Verge puts the number of total accounts, including the FAST service, at 30 million actives as of October.

“It’s 70 percent more than we started the year with,” NBCUniversal CEO Jeff Shell said in The Verge of the paid subscription momentum, adding that most Peacock subscribers are on the $4.99 Premium plan, “which provides access to all of the service’s content, including live events from WWE, Sunday Night Football, Premier League, and the upcoming World Cup.”

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