NBCUniversal’s Peacock Streaming Service Launches Nationally

The hype is over. Now comes the heavy lifting. NBCUniversal July 15 formally launched the Peacock app, affording users and subscribers access to more than 20,000 hours of content from networks and studios.

Peacock, unlike other SVOD platforms, offers an ad-supported free tier and an ad-supported premium tier for $4.99/month, serving no more than five minutes of advertising per hour. An ad-free version of the premium tier is also available for $9.99/month.

“This is a historic moment for our company as we proudly introduce Peacock to consumers nationwide — a groundbreaking vision that was brought to life by an incredible team of people from across Comcast, NBCUniversal and Sky,” Matt Strauss, chairman of Peacock, said in a July 14 statement.

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Like WarnerMedia’s HBO Max, Peacock is not available on Roku or Amazon Fire TV. It is available on Apple devices, including iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Apple TV 4K and Apple TV HD; Android, Android TV devices, Chromecast and Chromecast built-in devices; Xbox One S and Xbox One X; and Vizio SmartCast TVs and LG Smart TVs. Starting the week of July 20, Peacock will be available Sony PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 4 Pro.

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Content sources include NBC, Bravo, USA Network, Syfy, Oxygen, E!, CNBC, MSNBC, NBCSN, Golf Channel, Universal Kids, A&E, ABC, CBS, The CW, Fox, History, Nickelodeon, Showtime, Universal Pictures, DreamWorks, Focus Features, Illumination, ViacomCBS, Paramount, Lionsgate, Warner Bros. and Blumhouse. In addition, the service will feature Peacock Original movies and shows; more than 30 curated channels; current season series and specials from NBC and Telemundo; live news and sports; as well as daily trending highlights from “Today,” “NBC Nightly News,” “Meet the Press,” “Noticias Telemundo,” MSNBC, CNBC, NBC Sports, “E! News” and “Access Hollywood.”

Peacock Reveals Free and Premium Tier Content Offerings

Peacock, Comcast’s highly marketed streaming service, officially launched July 15 with more than 20,000 hours of premium content from networks and studios, including NBC, Bravo, USA Network, Syfy, Oxygen, E!, CNBC, MSNBC, NBCSN, Golf Channel, Universal Kids, A&E, ABC, CBS, The CW, Fox, History, Nickelodeon, Showtime, Universal Pictures, DreamWorks, Focus Features, Illumination, ViacomCBS, Paramount, Lionsgate, Warner Bros. and Blumhouse.

In addition, the service features Peacock Original movies and shows; more than 30 curated channels; current season series and specials from NBC and Telemundo; live news and sports; as well as daily trending highlights from TODAY, NBC Nightly News, Meet the Press, Noticias Telemundo, MSNBC, CNBC, NBC Sports, E! Newsand Access Hollywood.

“This is a historic moment for our company as we proudly introduce Peacock to consumers nationwide — a groundbreaking vision that was brought to life by an incredible team of people from across Comcast, NBCUniversal and Sky,” Matt Strauss, chairman of Peacock, said in a statement.

Peacock offers an ad-supported free tier and an ad-supported premium tier for $4.99/month, serving no more than five minutes of advertising per hour. An ad-free version of the premium tier is also available for $9.99/month.

Peacock is currently available on Apple devices, including iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Apple TV 4K and Apple TV HD; Google platforms and devices including Android, Android TV devices, Chromecast and Chromecast built-in devices; Microsoft’s Xbox One family of devices, including Xbox One S and Xbox One X; and VIZIO SmartCast TVs and LG Smart TVs. Comcast’s eligible Xfinity X1 and Flex customers, as well as eligible Cox Contour customers, enjoy Peacock Premium included with their service at no additional cost.

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As previously reported, starting the week of July 20, Peacock will be available on Sony PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 4 Pro

Both free and premium tiers will feature current seasons from NBC, news, sports and pop culture highlights, and dozens of genre channels, including live news from NBC News Now and Sky News, exclusive curated channels featuring the best moments from shows such as “The Office” (“Office Shorts”), “Saturday Night Live” (“SNL Vault”), “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” (“Fallon Tonight”), “Late Night With Seth Meyers” (“Seth Meyers Now”), and exclusive genre channels like CNBC Make It, Today All Day, CNBC Ka-Ching, American Greed, 80s Mixtape, True Crime, Kiss Me Deadly, Peacock Reality, Out of This World, Caso Cerrado and I Love Jenni, among others.

Peacock will deliver more than 13,000 hours of content — completely free — including a vast library of popular movies such as the The Bourne Identity, The Bourne Supremacy, The Bourne Ultimatum, Jurassic ParkJurassic Park III, Tully, Phantom Thread, The Interpreter, American Psycho, The Matrix, The Matrix Reloaded, The Matrix Revolutions, The Blair Witch Project, The Mummy, Joe, Fletch, Fletch Lives, The Chronicles of Riddick: Dark Fury, Fear, Psycho, Do the Right Thing, Howard the Duck, Billy Elliot, The Birds, Willie, Fear and Loathing In Las Vegas, The Last House on the Left, I Am Ali, In The Name of the Father, Lone Ranger, The Hitcher, Law Abiding Citizen, The Sting, What Dreams May Come, Fried Green Tomatoes, One True Thing, Gosford Park, Dracula and Dragnet.

 The free tier will offer new episodes of NBC current season series one week after they air, including “This Is Us” and “The Blacklist,” sample episodes of Peacock Originals, and hundreds of classic shows, including “30 Rock,” “Parks and Recreation,” “Saturday Night Live,” “Saved by the Bell,” “Punky Brewster,” “The Johnny Carson Show,” “The Carol Burnett Show,” “Real Husbands of Hollywood” and “Everybody Hates Chris”; dramas like “Friday Night Lights,” “Downton Abbey,” “Parenthood,” “Monk,” “Heroes,” “Psych,” “The Game,” “Suits,” “Sacred Lies,” “Royal Pains,” “Battlestar Galactica,” “Columbo,” “Hunter,” “The Rockford Files,” “Dateline,” “21 Jump Street,” “Highlander,” “Leave It To Beaver,” “Munsters” and “Murder She Wrote”; reality series “Below Deck,” “Southern Charm,” “Chrisley Knows Best,” “Botched,” “Flipping Out,” “Million Dollar Listing New York,” “Pawn Stars,” “Storage Wars,” “Real Housewives of Dallas,” “Jay Leno’s Garage,” “Shahs of Sunset” and “Undercover Boss”; competition series “Top Chef Masters,” “Hell’s Kitchen,” “King Kong The Animated Series,” “Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures,” “Fievel’s American Tails” and “Woody Woodpecker”; and Spanish-language titles “Betty en NY”, “I Love Jenni”, “Reina De Corazones,” “The Riveras,” “Preso No. 1,” “Caso Cerrado,” “El Baron,””El Chema,” “Larrymania,” “Perro Amor,” “Mi Familia Perfecta,” “Quien es Quien,” “Victoria” and “Donde Esta Elisa”.

Live sports in the free tier include four exclusive Premier League matches on July 15, coverage of the U.S. Open Championship and Women’s Open Championships, an NFL Wild Card Playoff Game, and select events from the upcoming Tokyo and Beijing Olympics. In addition, sports fans will enjoy on demand replays of events like Triple Crown horse races, daily highlights from NBC Sports, and hundreds of hours of sports series, documentaries and films such as Tiger Woods Chasing History1968I Am AliDream TeamBeing EvelFehertyWillieand Peacock Originals Lost Speedways and In Deep with Ryan Lochte.

Peacock Premium will feature access to all 20,000 hours of programming on the platform, including everything in the free tier plus the full catalog of Peacock Originals including Brave New World, The Capture, Intelligence, Psych 2: Lassie Come Home, DreamWorks Where’s Waldo?, DreamWorks Cleopatra In Space and Curious Georgeall library series including treasured favorites like “Two and a Half Men,” “Everybody Loves Raymond,” “George Lopez,” “Jeff Foxworthy Show,” “King of Queens,” “Superstore,” “Frasier,” “Cheers,” “House,” “The Affair,” “Yellowstone,” “Law & Order,” “Law & Order: SVU,” “Ray Donovan,” “Swedish Dicks” and “American Ninja Warrior”; kids series including DreamWorks’ “Dragons: Riders of Berk,” “Care Bears” and “Care Bears: Welcome to Care-a-Lot”; and the entire movie collection including titles such as ShrekLone Survivor, Ted, Identity Thief, Children of Men, Charlie Wilson’s War, Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Frankenstein, Kicking and Screaming, Larry Crowne, and You, Me & Dupree.

 The premium tier will also provide earlier access to programming, such as next-day access to new episodes of current season NBC shows, including America’s Got Talent, Blindspot, Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist, A Little Late with Lilly Singh, Saturday Night Live, Superstore, Law & Order: SVU, Chicago P.D., Chicago Fire, Chicago Med, New Amsterdam, Manifest, The Titan Games, Hollywood Game Night, World of Dance, The Kelly Clarkson Show, Access Hollywood, Days of Our Lives, Dateline, NBC Nightly Newsand Meet the Press, and Telemundo series including 100 Días Para Enamorarnos, Celia, Cennet, Enemigo Intimo, La Doña, Minuto Para Ganar and Noticias Telemundo. Exclusive access to Late Night With Seth Meyers and The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 8:00 pm ET will only be available on Peacock Premium when the shows return to in-studio production.

 Peacock Premium will also feature access to a growing catalog of live and on demand sports programming, including more than 175 exclusive Premier League matches for the 2020-2021 season; coverage of elite cycling events like the Tour De France from August 29 – September 20, and La Vuelta from October 20 – November 8; and more than 100 hours of WWE content coming in August including series WWE Untold and Steve Austin’s Broken Skull Sessions, and compilations like John Cena’s Best WrestleMania Matches.

New original programming will continually debut on Peacock, including previously announced titles like Angelyne,  Rutherford Falls,  Battlestar Galactica, Punky Brewster,  Dr. Death, Housewives Mash-up, Saved By the Bell, Five Bedrooms, Lady Parts, Girls5Eva, Who Wrote That, Kids Tonight Show, The Amber Ruffin Show, Armas De Mujer and Caso Cerrado.

In addition, popular shows will soon live on Peacock, including “The Office,” “Chicago P.D.,” ”Chicago Fire,” ”Chicago Med,” “Roseanne,” “3rd Rock From the Sun,” “Bates Motel,” ”Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” ”Real Housewives of Atlanta,” “Real Housewives of New York,” “Real Housewives of New Jersey,” “Real Housewives of Orange County,” “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills,” “Vanderpump Rules,” “Millionaire Matchmaker,” “Top Chef,” “Married with Children,” “Curse of Oak Island,” ”First 48,” ”American Pickers,” ”Ancient Aliens,” “Cold Case Files” and “Charmed.”

Movie buffs will enjoy a steady influx of feature films, including movies in the Pay 1 window such as Trolls World TourYou Should Have Left, Croods 2Boss Baby 2, and Spirit, and upcoming library titles like Mama, Won’t You Be My Neighbor, The Purge, Riddick, Ride Along,  E.T., American Gangster, ANTZ, Fast & Furious, Fast 5, Fast & Furious 6, Field of Dreams, The Express, Knocked Up, Bridesmaids, National Lampoon’s Vacation, National Lampoon’s European Vacation, Wanted, Evan Almighty, The Conjuring, Dawn of the Dead, The Dark Knight, Beetlejuice, The Big Lebowski, Scent of a Woman, Meatballs, 3:10 to Yuma, Lost In Translation, Brokeback Mountain, Pitch Black, The Graduate, Police Academy, The Great Outdoors, Hostel, The Bone Collector, Robin Hood, The Hurt Locker, The Break Up, Open Water, It Follows, Carlito’s Way and Sinister.

Peacock will also streamNFL Wild Card Game, Ryder Cup and the Tokyo and Beijing Olympics coming in 2021 and 2022, respectively.

In addition to the nine Peacock Originals launching with the service on July 15, Peacock announced premiere dates for more original series to debut in the coming weeks, including:

“A.P. Bio” – Premiering Sept. 3

When disgraced Harvard philosophy scholar Jack Griffin (Glenn Howerton, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia) loses out on his dream job, he is forced to return to Toledo, Ohio, and work as a high school Advanced Placement biology teacher. As he comes crashing into Whitlock High School, Jack makes it absolutely clear that he will not be teaching any biology. Realizing he has a room full of honor roll students at his disposal, Jack decides instead to use the kids’ brainpower for his own benefit. But are his students instead helping him to realize his dream job might actually be the one he has right now? Eager to prove that he is still king of the castle, Principal Durbin (Patton Oswalt, Veep) struggles to control the force of nature that is Jack Griffin. The series also stars Mary Sohn (Work in Progress), Lyric Lewis (Baskets), Jean Villepique (Sharp Objects) and Paula Pell (Saturday Night Live). A.P. BIO  is produced by Broadway Video, Sethmaker Shoemeyers Productions and Universal Television.

“Departure” – Premiering Sept. 17

Passenger plane Flight 716 shockingly vanishes, and brilliant investigator Kendra Malley (Archie Panjabi, The Good Wife), alongside her mentor Howard Lawson (Christopher Plummer, Knives Out) are brought on to lead the investigation. When battling forces threaten to undermine their work, Kendra must find the truth and stop it from happening again. The series also stars Kris Holden-Reid (Umbrella Academy), Rebecca Liddiard (Run This Town), Tamara Duarte (Longmire), Mark Rendall (Versailles), Peter Mensah (Midnight, Texas) and Sasha Roiz (Suits). DEPARTURE is produced in association with Starlings Television and Corus Entertainment, produced by Shaftesbury (Canada) and Greenpoint Productions Ltd. (UK).

“Five Bedrooms” – Premiering Aug. 13

Five singles meet at, of all places, the singles’ table at a wedding. After several bottles of champagne, they decide to pitch in and buy a house together. Five singles buy a house together – what could go right?  It’s a grand social experiment with one glaring problem: they’ll have to actually live with each other.  All while journeying together through disasters, life-turning crises, and  moments of love, joy and heartbreak. The series stars Kat Stewart (Offspring), Stephen Peacocke (Whiskey Tango Foxtrot), Doris Younane (Frayed), Katie Robertson (Rosehaven), Roy Joseph (Halim), Kate Jenkinson (Wentworth) and Hugh Sheridan (Packed to the Rafters). FIVE BEDROOMS is produced by Hoodlum Entertainment with assistance from Film Victoria. It is co-funded by Sky StudiosNetwork Ten and Screen Australia.

“Hitmen” – Premiering Aug. 6

Best friends Jamie (Mel Giedroyc) and Fran (Sue Perkins) are trying to make their way in the world with only each other to rely on. They also just happen to kill people for a living. Fueled by their antics and frivolous bickering, each job inevitably gets derailed, leading them into bizarre misadventures, full of oddball characters and unexpected dilemmas. HITMEN is produced by Tiger Aspect in association with Sky Studios and is distributed by NBCUniversal Global Distribution.

 

ViacomCBS Begins Selling TV Shows on Sky Store

Borrowing a page from Apple iTunes, ViacomCBS Networks June 29 announced it has begun selling its TV shows on Comcast-owned Sky Store in the United Kingdom. The deal, which includes programming across MTV, Comedy Central and Nickelodeon, enables users to purchase the digital content via the Sky Store app, online or on Now TV, without the need for a Sky pay-TV subscription.

Fifteen years ago, NBC, Disney-owned ABC and others began selling TV episodes for $1.99 on iTunes — after the Apple platform’s success selling 99-cents music singles.

“We are doing the same thing with video we did with music,” the late Steve Jobs said in a statement at the time.

The Sky Store line-up features all 23 seasons of Comedy Central’s “South Park”; the latest seasons of MTV’s reality shows, “Ex on the Beach,” “Celebrity Ex on the Beach,” “Geordie Shore” and “The Hills: New Beginnings,” in addition to Nickelodeon’s “PAW Patrol,” “SpongeBob SquarePants,” “Dora the Explorer” and “The Adventures of Paddington.”

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“U.K. households continue to show a very healthy appetite to own digital content and ViacomCBS’s franchises are consistently top-sellers,” Dan Fahy, VP, commercial and content distribution at ViacomCBS Networks U.K., said in a statement. “We’re constantly expanding consumer access points to our brands and content, and the launch of our Nickelodeon, MTV and Comedy Central franchises on Sky Store is an important new path for consumers.”

Sky Store, which also sells HBO and BBC episodes, includes a DVD in the mail for all movie purchases.

Sky, Discovery Expand New Long-Term Partnership

Comcast-owned Sky and Discovery have agreed on a new long-term, multi-faceted partnership across the U.K, and Ireland, Germany and Austria. Discovery’s portfolio of real-life entertainment channels, including Discovery Channel, will continue to be showcased across the Sky platforms in the U.K., and on the Sky Deutschland platforms in Germany and Austria. The Discovery Channel will continue to be available on the Now TV platform in the U.K. and Sky Ticket in Germany.

The deal includes linear channel distribution, video-on-demand, direct-to-consumer products, and extension of the advertising relationship.

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For the first time, the multiyear deal also covers Discovery’s non-linear brands in the U.K. and Ireland. Sky will be a distribution partner for Discovery’s existing direct-to-consumer streaming services such as MotorTrend, and new products from the future pipeline of Discovery’s direct-to-consumer offerings.

“We bring together the best content from partners like Discovery, HBO and Showtime, add it to the best live sport in Europe, our award-winning Sky Originals and apps we love like Netflix, and put it all in one place on the world’s best platform, Sky Q,” Stephen van Rooyen, CEO of U.K.  and Europe for Sky, said in a statement.

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Sky Q and Eurosport will also be working together to bring the best possible experience to customers across the U.K. and Ireland for the 2021 Olympics with UHD and HD pop up feeds dedicated to specific sports and events.

As part of the expanded deal, Sky Media and Discovery renewed their advertising sales partnership in the U.K. and Ireland while creating new opportunities for advertisers in VOD and via AdSmart. Reaching more than 95% of the U.K. population, Sky Media represents all of Sky’s channels and also sells on behalf of a range of renowned broadcasters and channels including Channel 5, Viacom and Discovery.

“Sky and Discovery have been working together for more than 30 years to bring audiences the best in real-life entertainment,” added Kasia Kieli, president and MD for Discovery EMEA. “We are very pleased that our strategic relationship continues to grow, and our new multi-dimensional agreement means Sky customers can continue to enjoy our wide range of factual, sport, lifestyle and entertainment channels and programs for years to come.”

Comcast Extends Free Wi-Fi Access Through Year’s End

Comcast June 19 announced it will extend free access to its 1.5 million public Xfinity Wi-Fi hotspots to anyone who needs them, including non-customers, through the end of 2020.

Comcast launched free access earlier this due to the coronavirus pandemic. It then extended the offer for 60 days of free home Internet access for new eligible Internet Essentials customers, to help provide additional support to students and families in need through the end of the year. Comcast will also continue to waive the requirement that those customers not have a past due balance with Comcast to qualify for the free offer.

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“We saw a huge jump in usage after we opened up our public hotspots, and we’re excited to keep them open through the end of the year as the nation begins taking steps to reopen,” Dana Strong, president of Xfinity Consumer Services, said in a statement.

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Since making all of its hotspots available for free, Comcast said hundreds of thousands of non-Xfinity customers have taken advantage, and overall usage by consumers of the free public Wi-Fi hotspots has skyrocketed. The cabler’s public Wi-Fi network is the largest of its kind in the nation, and three times larger than that of any other provider. It’s available in outdoor and business locations, all of which can be found online at www.xfinity.com/wifi.

Comcast has a history of making its public hotspots available for free following local emergencies like hurricanes in the South, wildfires in California, and the recent tornadoes in Nashville.

Comcast Buying $2.5 Billion of its Long-Term Debt

Comcast June 11 announced that it is offering to purchase any and all of its outstanding “Floating Rate Notes” (due 2021), and together with subsidiary NBCUniversal Enterprise, has commenced a cash tender offer to purchase any and all of its outstanding “Senior Floating Rate Notes” (due 2021).

The purchase price for each $1,000 principal amount of each note validly tendered and accepted for purchase pursuant to the tender offers ranges from $1,006 to 1,003.50.

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All holders whose notes are accepted for purchase will also receive accrued and unpaid interest on the purchased notes from the last interest payment date up to the settlement date.

The tender offers will expire at 5 p.m. ET on June 17, unless extended or earlier terminated. Holders who have validly tendered their notes may withdraw such notes at any time at or prior to the expiration time.

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Byron Allen, Comcast Settle Racial Discrimination Lawsuit

Despite a previous setback ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court, litigants in the case involving Byron Allen’s Entertainment Studios Networks and Comcast June 11 announced they have made nice, entering into a content carriage arrangement that extends and amends terms for The Weather Channel and 14 broadcast television stations.

The companies announced that pending litigation between the two organizations has been withdrawn. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

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Allen and the National Association of African-American Owned Media in 2015 alleged Comcast worked to keep black-owned media networks off its platform. The Court in March ruled unanimously to send the case back to the appellate level, arguing Allen needed to better prove bias on behalf of Comcast.

The new carriage deal includes distribution of Comedy.TV, Recipe.TV and JusticeCentral.TV on X1 and video on demand and TV everywhere rights for those networks. Comcast will also launch the free ad-supported digital app, Local Now, on the Xfinity X1 and Flex platforms, and Xfinity customers who receive The Weather Channel will have access in the coming months to its weloveweather.tv website and app on an authenticated basis.

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“We’re excited to begin a new phase of partnership with Comcast and Xfinity, including the distribution of our cable channels for the first time on Xfinity platforms,” Allen said in a statement.

Bec Heap, SVP of video and entertainment at Comcast Cable, said the pay-TV operator was pleased to move past litigation and iron out a mutually beneficial deal.

“We are pleased to have reached this multifaceted agreement that continues our long relationship with The Weather Channel while bringing Xfinity customers additional content,” We look forward to an ongoing partnership,” Heap said.

Comcast corporate earlier this week pledged $100 million to assist minority-based businesses and social justice organizations.

Allen’s separate litigation against Spectrum continues.

Comcast Pledges $100 Million to Fight Racism, Advance Social Justice

Comcast chairman/CEO Brian Roberts June 8 issued a letter decrying the civil unrest rocking the country since the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police on Memorial Day.

Roberts said Comcast would pledge $100 million to fight for social justice and equality, which includes $75 million cash and $25 million in media spending.

“We know that Comcast alone can’t remedy this complex issue,” Roberts wrote. “But you have my commitment that our company will try to play an integral role in driving lasting reform. Together, we hope to help create a more equitable, just and inclusive society.”

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Specifically, Roberts said the media giant would partner with, and provide significant grants to, organizations working to eradicate injustice and inequity. Organizations will include but not be limited to: the National Urban League, the Equal Justice Initiative, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the National Action Network and the Community Justice Action Fund.

Roberts said Comcast would put the “full weight” of its media resources behind highlighting black voices and black stories and educating viewers on diverse and inclusive cultures, perspectives and experiences, by making anti-racism education and inequality awareness a priority.

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“We will use our platforms across the organization to continue to shed light on societal issues related to race,” Roberts wrote. “NBC News will host a series of Town Halls, similar to their ‘Can You Hear Us Now’ special that aired this past Tuesday, and we will use the X1, Flex, Peacock and Sky platforms to promote and amplify multicultural content.”

Xfinity Flex Surpasses 1 Million Devices Deployed

Comcast May 14 announced it has deployed more than 1 million Xfinity Flex devices since the unit’s launch last year. Included with Xfinity Internet (broadband) for free, the device leverages Xfinity X1 technology to deliver video to high-speed Internet-only (non-pay-TV) subscribers.

Dana Strong, president, Xfinity consumer services, said the platform combines access to 200 third-party streaming services such as Peacock, Hulu, CBS All Access, Radio.com and Black News Channel. These services join Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Amazon Music, HBO Now, YouTube, Epix, Starz and Pandora. Flex also affords subs access to AVOD services such as NBCUniversal’s Xumo, Tubi and Pluto TV.

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“Flex was designed to fit seamlessly into the lives of our Internet-only customers,” Strong said.

Last month, NBCU previewed Peacock to Flex subs. Peacock Premium is now available to Xfinity X1 and Flex customers at no extra cost. The service offers over 15,000 hours of shows and movies, and Flex customers can simply say “Peacock” into their voice remote to explore iconic shows and movies, NBC favorites, plus trending news and pop culture updated daily.

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NBCUniversal, Sky Partner on Joint Advertising Platform

NBCUniversal and sister company Sky have launched of an advertising partnership enabling the companies’ original content to be available for purchase through NBCUniversal’s upstart “One Platform.”

Leadership of the new global division will be announced in the coming weeks, and will report into NBCUniversal Chairwoman Linda Yaccarino as well as partner closely with Sky Chief Business Officer Patrick Béhar.

NBCUniversal parent Comcast acquired U.K. satellite TV operator Sky for $39 billion in 2018.

With many consumers stuck at home during mandated government quarantine measures, domestic TV viewership is expected to add 8.3 million viewers in 2020 — the first increase since 2011, according to eMarketer.

With the global coronavirus pandemic upending traditional advertising strategies, NBCUniversal’s One Platform aims to give marketers access to premium content and advanced advertising capabilities that NBCU and Sky each bring to market.

Comcast, NBCUniversal and Sky’s combined $24 billion investment in original content ranges from “Saturday Night Live” to “Game of Thrones,” as well international news efforts. NBCUniversal and Sky claim to reach an audience that spans more than half a billion viewers every month in more than 160 countries.

“At a time when lots and lots of companies are slashing their ad budgets, or at least pausing them, now the supply of viewing time or ad inventory exceeds the demand from advertisers to fill it,” Ross Benes, analyst at eMarketer, told CNBC. “It’s great to get people to watch your show, but each viewer is being monetized much lower than they were months ago.”

One Platform hopes to remedy that issue.