In this week's collection of recent cord-cutting news items from around the web: Pluto TV Launches Four New Channels, Peacock Had a "Fantastic Launch," Amazon wants to be the exclusive provider of all Thursday NFL games, a tiny startup is reinventing the DVR for the cord-cutter era, Discovery Plus is the perfect background noise streaming service, and more!
The Streamable reports that free streaming TV service Pluto TV has added four new channels, adding more sports, kid's shows, and scripted entertainment. According to The Streamable, "[t]he most interesting is no doubt Paramount+ Picks, a channel featuring shows like Star Trek: Discovery and The Stand, NCIS, Big Brother and more. These shows, of course, are available on Paramount+, ViacomCBS’ re-branded streaming service. As ViacomCBS owns both Pluto TV and Paramount+, this channel is a great opportunity to allow potential viewers to 'try before they buy' the streaming service." More information on Paramount Plus on Roku can be found here.
"After NBCUniversal streaming service Peacock surpassed 33 million signups, Comcast CEO and chairman Brian Roberts touted post-launch growth prospects during an appearance at an investors conference," says Hollywood Reporter. "'Peacock had a fantastic launch. And we're only a few months into it,' Roberts told Morgan Stanley's 2021 Technology, Media & Telecom Conference during a session that was webcast. He added that NBCUniversal was looking to ride the early momentum for Peacock by possibly accelerating growth with additional 'ramp up' investments. NBCUniversal is focused on originals TV production to drive signups and usage of the AVOD service as it follows the rollout plan of fellow streaming newcomers Disney+ and HBO Max by also choosing from the extensive library of programming from across NBCUniversal's portfolio. At the same time, Roberts said the studio would look to pull back and 'redeploy' premium content from Hulu to encourage consumers to subscribe to Peacock."
"Amazon wants to be the National Football Leagues exclusive producer of Thursday games starting in 2023," CNBC reports, "but the NFL may decide to keep certain games on the NFL Network and take less money from Amazon, according to people familiar with the matter. Amazon is in talks with the league to pay about $1 billion for an entire season's worth of exclusive games, outside of the local TV markets of the two teams playing, said the people, who asked not to be named because the talks are private. The talks are ongoing and no decision has been made, said the people."
"It's hard to frame a new strategic alliance between Roku (NASDAQ:ROKU) and Nielsen (NYSE:NLSN) as anything other than a win-win arrangement,"claims The Motley Fool. "It's easy to see what Roku will be getting out of the deal. The streaming video pioneer will be buying Nielsen's Advanced Video Advertising business, a transaction that includes Nielsen's video automatic content recognition and dynamic ad insertion technologies. Ad revenue is the lifeblood of free-to-use Roku, and this move will speed up the launch of Roku's end-to-end dynamic ad insertion platform for TV programmers."
"The rise of cord cutting and streaming video was supposed to render the digital video recorder (DVR) irrelevant," according to Fast Company. "In theory, you shouldn't need to record anything when services like Netflix and Amazon Prime make everything available on demand." But "[w]atching TV now means bouncing between a dozen different apps, each with its own separate menu system, catalog, and watch list. Say what you will about the stodginess of cable, at least it put everything in one place. That's why a tiny company called Fancy Bits... is bringing the DVR back. The company's $8 per month Channels service takes video from a wide range of sources — online cable channel feeds, live-streaming apps, over-the-air broadcasts, and even on-demand services like Netflix — and pulls it all into one menu. It does this primarily by letting users create their own personal copies of the content, just like an old-school DVR."
Julia Alexandar, writing for The Verge, says she has "spent the past few weeks steadily making my way through a show that's been on the air for more than 20 years, thanks to Discovery Plus: House Hunters." She says that the new on-demand video streaming service "exists as white noise in my apartment: the buzzing of couples arguing over whether to pay the full $560,000 for a house in the nice neighborhood closer to the cute bistro or take a chance on the $480,000 home that needs some work but is way under budget emitting from my TV set. From the time I start working until the second I'm beginning to wind down, House Hunters plays continuously on its dedicated channel housed within Discovery Plus."RokuGuide.com may receive a referral fee for any purchases or subscriptions made through links on this page. See our full FTC Disclosure Statement for more information.