Oh, Shell no.
They say the best things in life are free, and, for a time, that included Peacock Premium for Comcast Xfinity customers. But unfortunately, NBCUniversal CEO Jeff Shell said that time is going to come to an end.
During Credit Suisse’s 24th annual Communications Conference on Tuesday, June 14, the NBCU CEO said that Peacock’s 13 million paying subscribers only come from a portion of the country because Comcast Xfinity customers receive Peacock Premium for free. However, to capitalize on growth potential, the company will eventually “roll that to pay.”
“So 13 million [isn’t] a fair representation when we have millions of people in Comcast homes getting it for free and using the content,” Shell said.
Of course, the timeline still isn’t clear. For now, the CEO says the Peacock Premium deal is a “benefit to [the] Comcast ecosystem.”
Currently, Peacock Premium, which regularly costs $4.99 per month, is included at no additional cost for all Xfinity Flex customers and Xfinity X1 and video customers who have a subscription to Xfinity internet or Digital Starter TV. According to Variety, customers can also upgrade for $5 per month to Peacock Premium Plus, which has no ads and usually costs $9.99 per month.
During the conference, Shell also said that the company receives more revenue due to its ad-supported tier than from subscription fees.
“In two short years, we’ve ramped [Peacock] up to a level that, next to Hulu, is probably second to anybody in the industry. We are getting CPMs at the broadcast level, which I don’t think we expected to do. We had hoped to do that. And we are getting CPMs at that premium level,” Shell said.
According to NBCU, Peacock currently reaches around 60 million monthly active users.