When NBC launched Peacock TV in 2020, many people wondered if the streaming space needed yet another provider.
Despite having significant competition, the platform established itself as a solid option to help cord-cutters get the content they want at an affordable price.
This Peacock review is the result of hours of testing the video streaming service to help you learn what comes with the plans and if you should upgrade to the highest tier.
What is Peacock?
Peacock is the NBC streaming service offering access to content from the NBCUniversal family.
Depending on which plan you choose, you can watch movies and TV classics, Universal films, live streaming news, sports channels, and original content.
There’s also plenty of on-demand content from the vast library of NBC television programming.
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How Much is Peacock TV a Month?
Peacock TV is an affordable on-demand streaming service. You can choose one of two plans, Premium and Premium Plus.
The service formerly offered a free tier, but that is no longer available to new subscribers as of February 2023.
*Now through June 12, 2023, get an annual subscription to Premium for $20. This is a savings of 60 percent off the normal price. Use the code SUMMEROFPEACOCK to get the deal.
The Premium plan is ad-supported and provides unlimited access to NBC shows, originals, and live TV programming.
The Premium Plus plan has very limited ads in on-demand content. You will see ads in any live content from your local NBC station though.
Peacock has three plans:
- Peacock – free, no longer available to new subscribers
- Peacock Premium – $4.99 a month or $49.99 a year
- Peacock Premium Plus – $9.99 a month or $99.99 a year
If you don’t want to spend money, read our guide on the top free streaming apps that have quality content.
Does Peacock Have a Free Trial?
It is no longer possible to get a free trial to try the Premium or Premium plus plans. The service also recently removed its free tier to all new subscribers.
That aside, there is a lot of value for the subscription cost.
As is true of all streaming services, you can cancel whenever you want without a fee or penalty.
What TV Shows and Movies are on Peacock?
This video streaming service offers thousands of hours of movies and TV shows, exclusive content that’s only on Peacock, plus news and sports.
There’s also a good amount of content for kids as well as Spanish language programming from Telemundo.
However, you won’t be able to watch all episodes of every show. Take SNL, for example. The most recent airing won’t be available immediately with the free plan.
You’ll get a lot of back seasons and the second most recent episode. If you want to receive the current episode, you’ll need to pay for Premium.
If you’re a fan of the hit Dutton-family inspired drama, Peacock is the best choice to watch Yellowstone without cable.
At $4.99 a month, Premium includes everything in the free Peacock plan plus live sports from the Premier Soccer League, the 2022 Winter Olympics and exclusive original series.
It also includes every episode of The Office, Parks and Recreation, Suits, 30 Rock, Poker Face, and every other show on Peacock. You’ll even enjoy next-day access to current NBC hits as well as more movies and TV shows.
Additionally, you receive full access to all of their movies, Peacock original content, and TV shows for kids.
This is significant because it includes everything DreamWorks has made for kids and a lot of great on-demand content.
Peacock Premium Plus
Premium Plus is $9.99 a month and offers everything in the Premium tier, plus the ability to download select titles and watch them for free offline.
It also lets you watch everything ad-free. NBC does say that due to streaming rights, a small amount of programming will still contain ads.
This mostly includes Peacock channels, a few shows and movies, and events.
As of November 30, 2022, Premium Plus will also include access to all 210 of NBC’s local affiliates.
*Related: Do you want to cut the cord on cable, but not sure which streaming platform to choose? Take our free quiz to see which service is best for you.
WWE on Peacock
Every WrestleMania ever is on Peacock, which is the exclusive streaming home of the WWE Network and owner of the streaming rights for the franchise.
A paid subscription gives you access to a lot of WWE content. For $4.99 a month, you will unlock every live WWE pay-per-view event, including WrestleMania, SummerSlam, and Royal Rumble.
You can also watch every episode of Raw and Smackdown, with current full episode replays 30 days after their original air date.
You’ll find thousands of movies to watch on Peacock. However, most were made over ten years ago.
There are a handful of newer movies, like John Wick 3, and lots of classic films, including all the Harry Potter movies, Psycho, The Goonies, SpaceJam, and The Breakfast Club.
More movies are available on the Premium plan, but many last for only a limited period of time. For instance, the service had all the Jurassic Park and The Matrix movies when it launched.
Now, those are not available.
Peacock Original Content
Original shows are one of the draws for those looking into cord-cutting and can be some of the most popular content on a streaming service.
Hulu’s award-winning series, The Handmaid’s Tale, is one example of television content only available through Hulu.
Nothing at Peacock has risen to that level, but it does have several originals available to Premium tier subscribers.
Read our Hulu vs. Peacock analysis to learn how the two services compare.
Original series include Saved by the Bell, Save Me, A.P. Bio, The Departure, and The Capture. If you’re looking for more original content, there are other alternatives to Netflix that are more suitable.
You can start watching select MSNBC shows on Peacock starting in spring 2022.
MSNBC announced on March 10, 2022 that popular shows like Morning Joe and All in With Chris Hayes will be on the platform hours after they air on the cable network.
No date has been set, but expect it to occur in the near future.
You will need to subscribe to Peacock Premium to get access to the shows.
*Update: As of March 2023 subscribers can stream select MSNBC and CNBC morning shows live as they air. This includes Morning Joe and Squawk Box. You can also watch NBC News Now’s Morning News NOW.
This is available to all Premium subscribers.
Peacock recently added a Hallmark Hub to its platform for Premium and Premium Plus subscribers. This gives users access to all three Hallmark channels – Hallmark, Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, and Hallmark Drama.
You can access live and on-demand content through the hub. Additionally, if you love Hallmark Christmas movies new ones are available on Peacock the day after they premier.
This makes Peacock the most affordable platform to watch Hallmark’s Countdown to Christmas.
The popular channel Reelz is now a part of Peacock. You can access shows from Reelz on either Peacock plan.
The streaming service now offers access to a live stream of the Reelz network, as well as on-demand shows from select shows. This includes the popular On Patrol: Live show.
The only content from Reelz subscribers aren’t able to see are new episodes of Major League Wrestling. That is due to the deal Peacock has with WWE to be the only wrestling content it airs.
Can I Watch NBC Live on Peacock?
As of September 19, 2022, the service now air populars shows the day after they air on NBC or Bravo.
While only available for Premium subscribers, you can watch numerous hit shows this way. Shows you can stream next-day include:
- Law & Order franchise
- One Chicago franchise
- La Brea
- The Voice
- America’s Got Talent
- Saturday Night Live
- The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
- Late Night with Seth Meyers
- Winter House
- Below Deck Med
- The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City
- The Real Housewives of Potomac
Additionally, many cord-cutters want to know if Peacock has local channels. You must subscribe to Premium Plus to receive access.
If you don’t have that plan, you can easily get your local NBC station with an over-the-air antenna. For a low, upfront cost, you’ll get all your local channels free, for life.
However, you will get some up-to-date news and sports through several live streaming channels NBC puts on the platform from select cities.
Those cities are:
- Chicago (WMAQ)
- Philadelphia (WCAU)
- Boston (WBTS)
- New England Cable Network (NECN)
- Miami (WTVJ)
The service will be adding Los Angeles (KNBC) and New York (WNBC) in the near future. You can watch the stations from any location, not just the respective cities.
You can watch live news and sports through the NBC News Now, NBC Sports, and Premier League TV stations in the “Channels” section.
Does Peacock Have NFL Games?
Yes, it is possible to watch some NFL games on the Peacock streaming service. There are a few caveats to catch the action. Those are:
- You must have the Premium or Premium Plus plans
- The only games you can watch are games aired on NBC
If you’re a fan of Sunday Night Football, Peacock is a fantastic option to get it.
If you don’t want Peacock, you can watch any NFL via its NFL+ mobile app. Read our review of NFL+ to learn more.
However, if you pair Peacock with Prime Video you can watch both Sunday and Thursday night games.
Peacock has a smooth look and feel. It is easy to watch on a TV, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.
You can create a free account with just an email address. A credit card is not required to register.
When you sign in on a computer, smart TV, or tablet, you’ll see a few featured shows at the top of the screen and a row of options at the very top.
The Channels, Browse, and Featured options are the three main ways the platform organizes its shows and movies.
Browse is the default view for bigger screens. Channels is the view you see first when you watch on your phone.
NBC includes extra content with many shows and movies that allow you to find similar titles and watch clips as well as trailers.
Clicking on any title brings up a screen. Then, that show’s Rotten Tomatoes score and Flixter rating are viewable just beneath it.
Any show with a purple triangle and white feather icon indicates premium content.
How Bad Are the Ads on Peacock?
While commercials are the same between the free and Premium plans, they are not that bad.
NBC says it runs less than five minutes of ads per hour of content you watch.
In an older movie that is about two hours long, you can expect six 45-second commercial breaks and a 20-second clip at the program’s start.
We found the statement to generally be true in our testing of the platform.
There are not as many interruptions on the CBS-backed free TV streaming service, Pluto. On some shows, NBC will run three minutes of ads at the beginning and then air the rest ad-free.
This commercial time is comparable to other, similarly-priced streaming services that offer ad-supported tiers, like Discovery Plus, Hulu, and HBO Max.
If you want ad-free content and the ability to download shows to watch offline, you’ll have to register for Peacock Premium Plus for $9.99 a month or $99.99 a year.
This compares well against the Paramount+ streaming service. Read our Peacock vs. Paramount+ analysis to see how the two platforms compare.
Nearly every mainstream device supports Peacock.
You can watch the free streaming service on Samsung and LG Smart TVs, Roku, Fire TV devices, Chromecast, computer, Apple TV, and iOS and Android phones and devices.
Pros and Cons
As you consider whether or not to try Peacock TV, here are some positives and negatives to consider.
- Access to local NBC affiliate for Plus users
- Huge catalog of on-demand shows and movies
- Next-day access to some NBC and Bravo shows
- Some live TV
- Access to live sports like Sunday Night Football and Nascar
- Plenty of content for kids
- Nearly 100,000 hours of content
- Inclusion of all three Hallmark channels
- Have to pay for full access to popular shows and movies
- No live local NBC access for the lower tier
- Channels and Trending section layouts are confusing
Overall, if you want a service that has a broad offering of popular shows, some live sports, and original content, Peacock is worth trying.
Ease of Use
Peacock TV Review
Get tons of popular shows and movies from NBCUniversal for only $5 a month, and no contract.
✔️ Access to local NBC station with the highest tier
✔️ Live sports, including some NFL games
✔️ Flexible plan options
✔️ Next-day access to some popular NBC & Bravo shows
✔️ Lots of content for children
❌ Must pay if you want access to all episodes of popular series
❌ No access to local NBC affiliates for lower plan
❌ Offline downloads only available with the Plus plan
Is Peacock Worth it?
Peacock is yet another streaming service in a very crowded space. But, if you like NBC shows and popular movies, it could be worth giving the service a try.
If you don’t mind commercials, the base plan is a good option, at an affordable price.
You’ll probably determine that you won’t need the higher-priced plan unless all your favorite shows are on NBC and you want to watch them ad-free.
Ultimately, Peacock TV can be an excellent way for cord-cutters who are fans of NBC content to ditch cable and save some money.
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