NBCUniversal may launch on Wednesday without distribution on Roku and Amazon Fire TV

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Don’t be a Peacock block. NBCUniversal may launch its new OTT video service without distribution on Roku and Amazon Fire TV

NBCUniversal’s new streaming service launches on Wednesday and has yet to announce a deal with the two most popular streaming platforms. Just like HBO Max, which has been absent from Roku and Amazon for nearly two months, Peacock could launch without apps on Roku and Amazon Fire TV, which collectively represent 70% of the streaming player market and roughly 80 million monthly active users.  A lot has changed in the industry in the last decade, including Roku and Amazon becoming more aggressive in their negotiations with new streaming service, however, there’s something that has not changed. And that’s consumers will find a way to watch what they want, when and how they want it. Consumers may cancel one subscription service in favor of another, they may turn to piracy, and they may just go out a by a new device, such as a Chromecast, that doesn’t restrict viewing options.  For example, to combat HBO Max not being "officially" available on Fire TV, Amazon users have figured out that they can sideload the app directly to their devices. Where there's a will, there's always a way. This is the biggest story to follow this week. And I’m very curious to see how the EU rules on Apple’s ongoing antitrust investigations regarding the company’s App Store and Apple Pay practices because all of this is related.  Everything I preach at 43Twenty is about removing friction. Roku and Amazon not carrying the latest OTT services on their platform definitely create friction. The question then becomes are these services “must-haves” and how much does carrying them (or not) matter? "When it comes to Peacock, we've got a very long-term strategy and vision for what we're bringing to market," said Matt Strauss, Peacock chairman. "It's not a sprint, it's a marathon for us.” #peacockblocking [Related: Everything you need to know about NBCUniversal’s Peacock. Link]

[Also Related: I recorded a video walkthrough of the Peacock app back when it soft-launched in April. Link]

Amazon Prime Video launches user profiles. Finally, I can set my son up with his own Prime Video profile so he can watch his shows like “The Dirty and Stinky Show”, “Tumble Leaf”, and “Creative Galaxy” and my profile will no longer be full of kids programming. It’s a win-win for the entire family. With profiles, users will have access to their own Watchlist, personalized recommendations, and they’ll be able to track their own viewing progress, similar to Netflix and Disney+. You can create up to six profiles, including one primary profile associated with the Amazon account, plus five additional profiles, which can be a mix of adult and kids’ profiles. Link

So far, Quibi’s prognosis is grim. While Quibi has been downloaded approximately 4.5 million times, according to Sensor Tower, only an estimated 72,000 users who installed the app between April 6 and April 8 converted to paid subscribers beginning July 5—an 8% conversion. Quibi disputed the figures. “The number of paid subscribers is incorrect by an order of magnitude,” a spokesperson said. “To date, over 5.6 million people have downloaded the Quibi app. Our conversion from download to trial is above mobile app benchmarks, and we are seeing excellent conversion to paid subscribers—both among our 90-day free trial sign-ups from April, as well as our 14-day free trial sign-ups from May and June.” Link

FuboTV reports growth in delayed Q1 earnings. Following its merger with FaceBank Group, fuboTV disclosed its delayed Q1 financials. The company earned $51 million in Q1 revenue. Monthly subscribers grew by 37% to more than 287,000, however, total users are down 9% compared to the end of December when the streaming platform reported just under 316,000 users. And even without live sports at the end of the quarter, users watched an average of 120 hours of TV  per month, up 52% year-over-year. That number has increased to 8.5 hours per day, or 145 hours per month, during the coronavirus pandemic for some customers. Link

Comcast launches Sling TV app on Xfinity Flex boxes for broadband customers. Catering to cord-cutters on their own terms, Comcast’s adopting a strategy of retaining high-margin broadband customers. Link iOS 14 and why it matters for your OTT apps. With the new iOS 14 update that’s set to roll out this fall, there are some pretty significant changes to the app paradigm. Although the update makes downloading apps a lot easier, unless users are adding your app to their home screens, it’s also going to become much easier to forget your apps completely. The holy grail will be to either get users to place your app on their home screens or use your app often enough to where it appears in the Siri “Suggested Widget”. And a great lifecycle marketing strategy can help. 43Twenty is a strategic advisory, digital and lifecycle marketing firm dedicated to the business of OTT video. We help our media, entertainment, and technology clients unearth opportunities to boost customer growth and revenue.

Discover more here or send us an email to schedule a meeting.


Mobile to provide 40% of SVOD subscriptions. According to Digital TV Research, there will be 1,161 million SVOD subscriptions in 2025, up from 642 million at end-2019. By then, 40% of these subscriptions will be on mobile apps, or via mobile operators. Link

App downloads and consumer spending reach record highs in Q2. According to App Annie, mobile app usage grew 40% year-over-year in the second quarter of 2020, even hitting an all-time high of over 200 billion hours during April. Consumer spending in apps, meanwhile, hit a record high of $27 billion in the second quarter. And app downloads reached a high of nearly 35 billion. Link

Free trials for the win! Zuora CEO Tien Tzuo ends an age-old debate. When it comes to freemium versus free trial. Link

A new study suggests audiences would be willing to pay $14 to watch a new superhero movie. But Even if a superhero movie were to be released on digital platforms, it would be difficult to match the profits it would make at the global box office. Business Insider

5 questions to ask your video strategist. Virtually every digital publisher has some form of video on their websites. They may be using existing content, or they could be leaning into user-generated content, but the transition from text to video that began a decade back has had a major effect on the entire publisher workforce. Digiday


Here's a list of some available opportunities within the media and entertainment space. If you have any job listings that you'd like us to share, contact TheStreamingWars@43twenty.tv

Director Product Architecture

Warner Bros. Entertainment

Burbank, CA

Director, Unscripted Programming HBO Max


Burbank, CA

VP, Data Engineering - HBO Max 


New York City

Senior Engagement Manager - Media

Akamai Technologies

New York City

Director of Sales 

Cox Media Group

Atlanta, Georgia

Manager, Customer Base Management

Altice USA

Long Island City, NY

Analytics and Business Intelligence Director

ION Media Networks

West Palm Beach, Florida

Senior Director Software Engineering


Redwood City, CA

Creative Director


New York City, NY

Sr Director, Mobile Product - Wi-Fi Offload

Cox Communications

Atlanta, GA

To explore partnership opportunities with The Streaming Wars newsletter, contact TheStreamingWars@43twenty.tv

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