Comcast Subscribers Can Soon Get Apple TV+ Bundled with Netflix and Peacock

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If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. At least that seems to be Comcast’s philosophy, as the cable provider is planning to bundle three popular streaming streaming services in much the same way it’s traditionally done for cable TV channels.

According to Variety, Comcast subscribers will soon have the option of subscribing to Peacock, Netflix, and Apple TV+ what Comcast CEO Brian Roberts says will be “a deep discount” compared to their regular prices.

Comcast is calling this bundle “StreamSaver,” and it will be available to all the provider’s customers, whether they’re using broadband, TV, or mobile. Robert says his company wants to “add value to consumers,” and while he hasn’t said anything about pricing, he’s using terms like “vastly reduced prices” and “pretty compelling package” to describe it.

To meet this goal, Comcast would have to make all three available for substantially less than the $25 or so per month that the individual plans will cost when purchased separately. Netflix Standard with ads costs $6.99, while Peacock’s ad-supported plan is currently $5.99 but expected to rise to $7.99 in July. Apple, of course, doesn’t have an ad-supported plan for Apple TV+; the standard (and only) plan is $9.99 monthly.

Once Peacock gets its price increase, that will work out to $24.97 per month. It’s also possible Comcast may choose to bundle the ad-free plans instead, in which case it would be looking to offer a better deal than the $39.47 cost of the three services. However, Comcast is expected to announce its new bundle later this month, ahead of Peacock’s price hike.

Comcast’s StreamSaver is just the latest development in what seems to be the trend for 2024 of bundling streaming services to help encourage customers to stick around. Last week, Disney and Warner Bros. Discovery announced a new Disney+, Hulu, and Max streaming bundle, and Disney-owned ESPN is also joining forces with Warner Bros. And Fox to produce a premium sports bundle.

Unlike StreamSaver, which is limited to Comcast customers, the Disney/Warner bundles will be available to anyone in the US who wants to subscribe, and customers will be able to sign up from any one of the services’ websites or apps.

Nevertheless, the one thing all these bundles have in common is reducing “churn” as more folks get fatigued by an endless collection of subscriptions.

Once upon a time, Netflix was the place to turn for TV and movie streaming. Its only major competitor was HBO Max, and like its namesake, that service was focused on premium content that was compelling in its own right, most notably Game of Thrones.

However, a few years ago, studios began to realize it was more lucrative to run their own streaming services than license their content to Netflix. The result was everything gradually began shifting back into content silos as Disney, NBC (Peacock), CBS (Paramount), ABC (Hulu), and more began spinning up their own streaming services and pulling their shows off Netflix.

Now, it seems we’re back where we were in the days of cable, with customers once again needing to subscribe to multiple services to enjoy all the shows they love. However, at a time when the cost of everything is rising — including the streaming services themselves — many folks are now managing their subscriptions strategically, switching between services throughout the year rather than maintaining ongoing subscriptions to all of them.

Of the bunch, Apple TV+ probably retains the most subscribers, thanks to Apple’s ability to offer value-added services beyond video streaming. With Apple Music, iCloud storage, and more, an Apple One bundle makes it far easier to keep Apple TV+ around on the side, even when you aren’t actively watching it — and also makes it more likely you’ll take a closer look at its outstanding collection of content since you already have it.

Other services don’t benefit from this kind of tie-in. Still, the studios hope bundling them together at discounted prices will give customers more reason to stay; as long as there’s something you’re interested in on at least one of the services, keeping the others around is easier.

That’s especially true if you’re getting three services for less than the price of two on their own, and it makes economic sense for the companies to buy into these bundles, since not only is twelve months of revenue at the full price the same as six months at half the price, but it’s far easier to maintain a customer than to draw them back in.

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