With new streaming platforms and offerings popping up all the time, it’s no surprise that streaming has fast eclipsed other ways to watch TV. A recent study by Hub Research is reporting that 55% of viewers reported that their default source for TV viewing is online (which includes streaming)—that’s up 5% since just last year. This is in comparison to the 39% of people who are still using traditional cable for TV viewing, which is down from 42% in 2020 and 47% in 2019.
And with more options, comes new fights between streaming providers as they try to carve out their own entertainment niche and redefine the laws governing big technology corporations. YouTube, which is owned by Google, has been popping up in entertainment news lately so this month, we want to focus on some of those recent stories and what they mean for you.
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YouTube TV vs. NBC
YouTube has announced a short term extension of a deal that will keep NBC channels included in its YouTube TV service. This is the latest chapter in the battle to cut the cord on cable completely, with big networks fighting back against streaming platforms—ultimately making it harder for customers to stream all of the channels they’re looking for.
NBCUniversal, which is owned by Comcast, operates the channels NBC, Bravo, CNBC, E!, Golf Channel, MSNBC, the Olympic Channel, Oxygen, Syfy, Telemundo, Universal Kids, Universal, USA Network, six regional NBC Sports Networks and more. With YouTube threatening to drop NBC channels, this would eliminate more than a dozen options, including local affiliates. Without these channels, YouTube TV subscription prices would also lower.
Peacock, NBC’s streaming service, was designed not to eat into NBC’s cable business and doesn’t have much overlap with the network’s primetime channels. As part of this fight, NBC was looking to have YouTube push Peacock Premium (typically a $5/monthly extra) as a mandatory add-on for YouTube TV subscribers.
While YouTube TV subscribers get to keep their NBC channels for now, this isn’t a permanent solution and we expect more updates in the near future.
YouTube vs. Roku
Back in June, we reported that contracts between YouTube TV and Roku had expired without a permanent solution being reached. Finally, we’re able to share an update on this battle and what it means for Roku and Youtube TV users.
Google, YouTube’s parent company, has announced that after December 9th, Roku customers will no longer be able to download the YouTube or YouTube TV apps onto their devices unless an agreement is reached.
Last summer, Roku had already determined that their customers would not be able to download the YouTube TV app. YouTube responded by embedding YouTube TV into the YouTube app for Roku to ensure Roku customers weren't stuck without the live TV service.
Thankfully this situation still won’t affect Roku users that have YouTube’s apps already downloaded, but unless this fight is resolved before December 9, anyone who purchases a new Roku device after December 9th will be out of luck. This is an ongoing story and we will be sure to share if more information becomes available.
Fox Launches Weather App
Last month we brought you our roundup of streaming weather platforms. Now Fox has entered the arena as they launch FOX Weather. The new service aims to offer dynamic, streaming weather coverage that speaks to all the different ways weather influences our lives—from push alerts about forecasts surrounding upcoming travel plans to how weather patterns might effect the big sports games—and has invited a team of meteorologists from across the country to join the team. FOX Weather aims to put weather experts into the news anchor's seat and let them do what they do best.
Since this platform is brand new, only time will tell if the service is as useful as it wants to be. But since it is ad-supported and free (unlike the FOX Nation app), there's no harm in exploring all it has to offer. FOX Weather is available via web browser, Apple iOS devices, Android devices and from smart TVs through the FOX NOW and FOX News apps.
A Final Word
As holiday shopping season ramps up, we're sure you're wondering what tech and entertainment gadgets you should be adding to your wish list. Be on the lookout as we bring back Marshmallow Streaming’s annual favorite product roundup in next month’s newsletter. Need recommendations or a consultation in the meantime? Reach out to us anytime at MarshmallowStreaming.com.