NBCUniversal today announced an "innovative new service" that ... will stream NBCUniversal shows online. In 2020. For free (and with ads) if you already pay someone for a service that includes NBCUniversal content. You'll be able to pay a second time to get rid of the ads.
Separate subscriptions will be available, too, if you're not signed up for other services.
And if you were worried that this means you wouldn't be able to get your "This Is Us" fix on Hulu or some other service, "NBCUniversal will continue to license content to other studios and platforms, while retaining rights to certain titles for its new service."
January 14, 2019 - New York, NY - NBCUniversal announced today the planned launch of a new streaming service providing consumers access to world-class premium content for free, with valuable partnership opportunities for advertisers and distributors. The service, which will launch in early 2020, will be led by Bonnie Hammer, who has been promoted to Chairman, Direct-to-Consumer and Digital Enterprises for NBCUniversal.
This innovative new service will draw on NBCUniversal's large content library, as well as its broad reach of over 90 million U.S. households, plus Comcast and Sky's leading technology platforms. It will feature some of the world's most popular television and film franchises, including homegrown original programming as well as content from outside partners.
The ad-supported service will be available at no cost to NBCUniversal's pay TV subscribers in the U.S. and major international markets. Comcast Cable and Sky will provide the service to their 52 million subscribers. An ad-free version will also be available for a fee. Additionally, non-pay TV customers can purchase a subscription to the service. Consistent with the company's long-standing strategy to distribute its content broadly, NBCUniversal will continue to license content to other studios and platforms, while retaining rights to certain titles for its new service.
So let's recap:
NBC will stream its own shows on this newfangled thing called the Internet.
Sometime next year.
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