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No, You Can't Replace NBCUniversal Channels With Peacock

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YouTube TV is having a carriage dispute with NBCUniversal right now. Who owns about 14 different channels and a handful of regional sports networks, which YouTube TV carries. For now, at least.

When YouTube TV announced earlier this week that they are in a dispute with NBCUniversal about this contract, that expires on September 30, 2021, it also mentioned that you can sign up for Peacock to get live football and more. The way it was worded, it sounded like YouTube TV was saying that you can get all of the same content from these channels on Peacock. Which is not true.

While yes, a lot of the content is available on Peacock, either the next day or in some cases a week earlier, not everything is there. For instance, WWE Raw which airs on Mondays on the USA network, is not available. Well, that’s not entirely true. It’s available, but it is added with a 30-day delay, and that’s due to the WWE’s contract with USA and Fox (for Friday Night Smackdown). So if you’re a WWE fan, this won’t work.

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NBCUniversal wants YouTube TV to bundle Peacock, which makes no sense

It’s said that a big reason why this dispute is going on is, Comcast (the owner of NBCUniversal and Peacock) is forcing YouTube TV to bundle Peacock with the service. Which would then raise the monthly price of YouTube TV. But this makes no sense.

While there are some original shows on Peacock, the majority of the content is already available on YouTube TV. You don’t need Peacock for Sunday Night Football, because it’s on NBC on YouTube TV. You don’t need Peacock for next-day episodes of your favorite shows, because it’s available on demand (or on Cloud DVR) on YouTube TV.

The only real reason to add Peacock would be for Premier League games. Which, arguably is a very small number of customers. And YouTube TV doesn’t believe it is worth it to force all of its customers to pay for Peacock when it really only benefits a small number (likely, less than 10%).

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That’s what it comes down to. And no, Peacock is not an adequate replacement for these channels that YouTube TV is going to lose. We’ll cross our fingers that Google and Comcast can come up with an agreement and keep these channels in place.