You know how Peacock became known as one of the dwindling number of streaming services to offer a free tier? With said free tier becoming one of their main advertisements? Well, bad news: this is now no longer the case for them, starting now for anyone new trying to sign up for it. So if you’re already reading this, then unfortunately, you’re out of luck.

Peacock: Free as a Clipped Bird

Peacock logo.
I’m thinking they’re going to need to change that tagline.

The Streamable has just revealed that as of Monday, January 30, 2023 (in fact, just yesterday as of this writing); NBCUniversal’s Peacock streaming service is no longer offering its signature free tier to new users. Previously, new users signing up for a subscription could choose between 1 of 3 different tiers. With the lowest tier being the free with ads tier, as you can see below.

Screenshot of old Peacock tier selection page for new users.
Who knew that this would just be a fond memory now?

Unfortunately, that was the old selection prior to Monday. Now, the new Peacock tier selection page only gives new users the option between Pay and Pay Some More. Oh sorry, I meant Premium and Premium Plus. The 2 tiers require you to pay $4.99 per month and $9.99 per month respectively though, so you can understand my slip of the tongue.

Screenshot of Peacock tier selection page for new users as of January 30, 2023.
The thing that makes you grumble at all streaming services.

Fortunately, there are some spots of good news. Existing subscribers to Peacock who signed up for the Free tier will still have their free tier. All you need to do is withstand some ads, and you can watch NBCUniversal shows entirely for free. Even better: new users who cancel their subscriptions or were formerly getting the Premium tier for free can actually choose to downgrade to the Free option. Curiously, this means that technically, new users can get the Free tier, but only after paying for a Premium tier. I guess NBCUniversal really wants to extract that one-time fee from new users now.

Screenshot of Peacock tiers available on the Plans & Payment options in the Account menu.
Really, the Free tier is now just more complicated to access.

Unfortunately, the elimination of the Free tier for new users does raise some serious worries. Will Peacock eventually eliminate their Free tier altogether at some point in the future? Just to force all users to pay, or cancel their subscriptions altogether? Unfortunately, neither The Streamable nor NBCUniversal has any official answer to this. We’ll just have to pray NBCUniversal doesn’t alter the deal any further.

Source: The Streamable