With many people staying home, Americans are watching more TV than ever. Several new streaming services were planned to launch in the coming months. Some viewers are asking: Can they push the release dates sooner?
In reality, some of these streamers are now scrambling to meet their original launch dates. That’s because the technical work involved is tough to pull off remotely.
NBCU’s streaming service Peacock was scheduled for a soft launch in April, followed by a full blown unveiling in July. But NBC was counting on the Olympics to advertise Peacock and air the competitions. With the Olympics now postponed, they’ve lost that platform. Peacock will now have to depend solely on library content. That’s not the scenario NBCU envisioned a few weeks ago.
One of the big draws of HBO Max was going to be a “Friends” reunion special. That too has been postponed. HBO Max was originally set to launch in May. For now, they’re still holding to that date.
Finally, there’s the new service Quibi, which is scheduled to drop on April 6. It’s the project of Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman. Quibi is their big attempt to put huge stars on a small screen for short videos. The bite-sized content is made specifically for mobile viewing. It’s designed to appeal to young adults. But some in Hollywood are skeptical that demographic is going to pay a monthly fee of $5 (with ads) or $8 (without ads).