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How much do you love The Office? Enough to pay $10 a month to have access to all 9 seasons of the beloved NBC sitcom? That’s what Peacock is banking on, with its peculiarly specific price plans for subscribers to the NBCUniversal streaming service.
Tiered pricing plans are a common feature of subscription services. Pay more each month to have an ad-free experience, or pay more to get more users on one plan. But pay more to watch more seasons of The Office? That’s definitely a bold pricing strategy. Let’s see if it pays off them.
As pointed out by a couple of eagle-eyed Twitter users, Peacock’s pricing plans seem to be centered solely around The Office, arguably the streaming platform’s most valuable title. Per the Peacock website, users who watch for free have access to seasons 1 and 2 of The Office — as well as the “thousands of hours of movies, TV shows, and pop culture” available on the platform. But pay the lowest-priced monthly subscription of $4.99 a month and you can “unlock every episode of The Office, plus extended cuts with never-before-seen footage & deleted scenes. Also get access to every movie, TV show, Premium sport & more.” The highest tier, at $9.99 a month, offers “all of The Office, and everything in Premium, without ads.”
It’s not totally surprising that Peacock wants to spotlight The Office in its marketing after NBCUniversal shelled over $500 million to Netflix for the rights to the popular sitcom. And we did know that The Office would only be available in its entirety to Peacock subscribers. But it is still kind of funny that Peacock is basing its pricing plans entirely around The Office, as opposed to highlighting its many other titles, like Universal films or that Saved By the Bell reboot.
But perhaps they won’t have other titles to highlight. According to journalist Matt Prigge, the entire archive of Universal vault classics has disappeared from Peacock, including well-known hits like Alfred Hitchcock’s films. It appears to be true, as the “Classics” section in Peacock’s website features a total of four titles, including venerated titles like The Saint: The Fiction Makers, Mr. Magoo’s Christmas Carol, and Columbo: Prescription Murder.
This likely suggests that the Universal archive classics will be licensed out to streaming platforms soon, and Peacock is doubling down on the big draw that it knows it has. But I wonder if they’re overestimating fans’ willingness to pay $10 a month for The Office when the box set for the complete series can be purchased for $50.
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