NBC recently entered the streaming service game with its Peacock streaming platform.
Officially launched in July 2020, Peacock offers thousands of hours of entertainment programming, consisting of classic movies and television series, curated channels, live sports coverage, and next-day access to current series for free, with limited ads. You can also upgrade to a monthly plan for even more exclusive content.
Whether you're interested in trying Peacock or just want to know how it compares to other platforms, we've got you covered. Here's everything you need to know about Peacock.
What is Peacock?
NBC's comprehensive Peacock platform sets itself apart from every other streaming service by offering a free, ad-supported tier for users. The free tier includes access to about two-thirds of Peacock's library — roughly 13,000 hours of ad-supported programming — including a limited selection of movies, news, live sports, and skit-style clips. In comparison, Hulu's ad-supported tier costs $6.
How much does Peacock cost?
In addition to the free tier, Peacock offers a Premium ad-supported tier for $5 a month, which increases the content library to 20,000 hours. The top-tier Premium Plus plan costs $10 a month and boasts 20,000 hours of interruption-free content. Included in both of the Premium-level plans is next-day access to current seasons of all NBC series, early access to late-night shows, and expanded access to Peacock Originals.
In which countries is Peacock available?
Peacock is not currently available outside of the United States. However, at Peacock's launch, NBC promised that it will "give consumers broad access to Peacock across web, mobile and connected-TV devices." There have also been rumors that NBCUniversal plans to expand the service into the UK in the near future.
Until NBC expands the service, viewers outside the U.S. who want to take advantage of the offerings on Peacock will have to access the streaming platform using a VPN, which lets you encrypt your Internet connection and circumvent certain international restrictions while still keeping your information secure.
What devices support Peacock?
At launch, Peacock was only available on a small selection of devices. However, Peacock is now available on Apple TV, Google Chromecast, Roku, iPhone/iPad, Web Browsers, Android Phone/Tablet, Android TV, Xbox, VIZIO Smart TV, Samsung Smart TV, and LG Smart TV.
While the Peacock App isn't technically available on Amazon TV devices at this time, there is a workaround for viewers using the Fire TV Stick, Fire TV streaming box, Fire TV Cube, or Fire TV Edition. All you'll need to do is enable the sideloading feature on your device, which gives you the ability to install apps from outside Amazon's official Appstore. The streaming service is also still missing on Nintendo Switch.
If you plan to access PeacockTV.com via a browser, the streaming service is also compatible with Chrome OS, macOS, and Windows PC desktops and laptops.
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Peacock also offers 4K video streaming and HDR video streaming for a limited selection of content, currently restricted to users with Peacock Premium or Premium Plus subscriptions.
What shows and movies are on Peacock?
Among the content that Peacock subscribers have access to are classic NBC series, like The Office and Law & Order, and fresh Peacock originals, such as the new version of Saved By the Bell and the upcoming reboot of Punky Brewster. A selection of series that originally aired on CBS, Showtime, The CW, and BET are also streaming on Peacock. As stated above, users who opt for the Premium or Premium Plus tiers will have access to more content.
Regarding film content, Peacock is also home to a rotating lineup of 700 Universal and Paramount films, including The Bourne, Fast & Furious, and Despicable Me franchises.
Unique to all three tiers of the Peacock platform is the impressive lineup of live and on-demand sports coverage. Specifically, subscribers can stream episodes of sports talk shows such as The Dan Patrick Show, The Rich Eisen Show, and Brother From Another. Peacock is also the exclusive United States hub for live Premier League matches and on-demand replays. Currently, 175 games per Premier League season are exclusive to Peacock.
Sports on Peacock
NBC also previously announced that its Peacock Premium tier will be the go-to streaming hub for extensive coverage of the Olympics, including live and on-demand domestic and international competitions of seven winter Olympic sports: alpine skiing, cross-country skiing, freestyle skiing, snowboarding, Nordic combined, ski jumping, and biathlon events.
Other sports-related content on the streaming service includes Paralympics coverage, U.S. Open, U.S. Women's Open, and Ryder Cup golf, as well as the Dale Earnhardt, Jr.-hosted Lost Speedways and In Deep with Ryan Lochte.
Themed channels on Peacock
The biggest difference between Peacock and its competitors may be that NBC's platform offers "channels" of TV. These channels aren't direct live streams but function as curated, themed feeds featuring shorter programming or full episodes of shows that have previously aired on television.
An example would be the Today All Day channel, a digital extension of NBC's daily morning show and combines show clips with Peacock-exclusive segments featuring the Today hosts. Subscribers will also see curated channels centered on The Office, SNL, and Keeping Up With the Kardashians, among other series.
Account limits, profiles and parental controls
In addition to being compatible with various streaming devices, Peacock allows subscribers to stream content on up to three different devices. While a handful of competing streaming services allow users within the same household to create separate profiles, Peacock limits membership to one common account per household.
Peacock is also advertised as a platform for users age 13 and older and doesn't allow subscribers to block content from the account that may be inappropriate for younger viewers. According to NBC, it has the ability to notify subscribers when a child under age 13 has viewed content on Peacock.
New customer? Try Peacock for free
Peacock is definitely the new kid on the block when it comes to streaming services. While Peacock's content library is considerably smaller than the likes of Netflix, Disney+, and Amazon, the fact that a large portion of it is available for free makes it a contender. Even Hulu doesn't offer that. Exclusive access to popular NBC series, as well as live sports coverage, also help Peacock stand out.
Beyond the free Peacock tier, Comcast Xfinity and COX customers can access Peacock Premium at no extra cost. NBC also offers prospective Peacock subscribers the chance to try the Premium or Premium Plus tiers as part of a free 7-day trial. All you need to do is head to PeacockTV.com homepage and select "Start 7-day free trial."
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