On Tuesday, Comcast announced Now TV, a new $20-a-month cable-like streaming service for Xfinity Internet customers with access to more than 40 live channels, more than 20 FAST services and a subscription to Peacock Premium. It will be launched in the “coming weeks”, according to a press release.
The “Now TV Live” offering includes many channels you might know from a cable package, though notably some of the most popular cable channels, including CNN, ESPN, and TBS, are not part of the package. According to Comcast’s press release, you can access the following channels through the Xfinity Stream app:
A&E, Afro, AMC, Animal Planet, BBC America, BBC News, Comedy.TV, Koken, Crime + Investigation, Discovery, Discovery Life, Food Network, FYI, Great American Family, Great American Living, Get TV, Game Show Network, Hallmark Channel, Hallmark Drama, Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, HGTV, The HISTORY Channel, Investigation Discovery, IFC, Justice Central, Lifetime, Lifetime Movie Network, Magnolia Network, Military History, MotorTrend Network, OWN, Pursuit, Recipe. TV, Science Channel, Sony Movies, Sundance TV, TLC, Travel Channel, Vice, WEtv and Weather Channel
As for the FAST services (free ad-supported streaming television), here’s what will be included:
NBC News NOW, Sky News and the following Xumo Play genre-based channels: Action Movies, Black Cinema, Bollywood & Indian Cinema, Comedy Movies, Comedy TV, Crime TV, Documentaries, Drama & Action TV, Family Movies, Food Tv , movies, game shows, her movies, horror and thriller, kids TV, reality TV, sci-fi and fantasy movies, travel and lifestyle TV and westerns
And with Peacock Premium, you get access to the shows available on that streaming service, including this year’s Poker face And Mrs. Davissome sporting events and more.
The all-in-one Now TV streaming package seems ideal for anyone who wants access to a small number of cable TV channels but doesn’t want the much more expensive subscription plans that Hulu offers with Live TV, FuboTV, and Sling TV. The added Premium Peacock subscription at $4.99 per month is also a nice perk, especially as Comcast is taking away free plans for Xfinity subscribers next month.
In the UK and other European countries, Sky Group, owned by Comcast, already uses the Now TV brand name. While Comcast announced earlier this year that it would be launching a “global user interface for Sky Glass, X1, Flex, Xumo and our US and international partners,” the company has confirmed that it isn’t.
In addition to owning NBC Peacock, Comcast already has a FAST service it acquired called Xumo Play. Through a joint venture with Charter, Comcast plans to build a streaming hardware ecosystem around the service to compete with Roku, including new Xumo-branded TVs and set-top boxes.
Disclosure: Comcast is an investor in Vox Media, The edge‘s parent company.