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Comcast’s Peacock flies high with 33 million users

A still frame from a version of Comcast’s Peacock running on a Roku device. (Graphic by The Desk)

Comcast is having a great moment.

The cable company said its streaming TV service Peacock now has 33 million users across the United States, an increase from 22 million users at the end of September.

The figure was reported in a press release and quarterly earnings report on Thursday. The number reflects users who stream Peacock’s free tier as well as its premium one, which starts at $5 a month.

Peacock’s free tier includes a limited, curated selection of content, while Peacock Premium offers an expansive catalog of original programs and licensed TV shows and movies. Both are subsidized through short ad breaks, though customers can pay $10 a month for Peacock if the want to stream content without interruptions.

Accelerating Peacock’s quarterly growth includes landing the Hary Potter trilogy from WarnerMedia (it was briefly available to HBO Max subscribers last year) and snatching NBC’s hit workplace sitcom “The Office” from Netflix at the beginning of the year.

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Peacock is poised to grow even more as Comcast winds down its national sports network NBCSN, which will result in a handful of sports events and sports-related programs moving to Peacock. The streaming service will also become the exclusive home of World Wrestling Entertainment programs in march; WWE’s own streaming service will close around the same time.

Comcast has also entered into strategic partnerships with some cable operators to provide extended access to Peacock’s premium tier for free. Customers of Cox Cable with certain Internet and TV packages receive Peacock Premium for free, while Internet-only customers are given an extended free trial. (Cox licenses Comcast’s X1 platform for its Contour set-top boxes.)

The same is true for Charter/Spectrum customers, which enjoy an extended free trial of Peacock Premium before they’re asked to pay $5 a month for the expanded content of library.  (Unlike Cox, Charter is reportedly developing its own competitor to Comcast’s X1.)

No one has a better deal than Comcast’s own TV and Internet customers: Peacock Premium is available for free as long as customers have either an X1 or Flex box on their account

Peacock is available on Roku, Apple TV and Android TV devices (it’s still not available on Amazon Fire TV) as well as Xbox game consoles and LG smart TVs. Apps are also available for Apple and Android phones and tablets.

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is a nationally-recognized, award-winning journalist who has covered the business of media, technology, radio and television for more than 10 years. He is the publisher of The Desk and contributes to Know Techie, Digital Content Next and StreamTV Insider. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, the Walt Disney Company, McNaughton Newspapers and Tribune Broadcasting.
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