Weekend Wrap Up: Peacock Lands on Roku, Amazon’s New Fire TV Gear, and More





Couple on sofa with TV remote

This week, Peacock officially landed on Roku following a weekend’s worth of developments and Sling TV unveiled a Watch Party feature. We’re also rapidly approaching the holiday season, and more companies are starting to share their plans for what could be a busy shopping season. Case in point: Amazon hosted an online showcase this week where we learned about its brand-new Fire TV Stick models. Elsewhere, updated images on Sony’s website gave us our first glimpse at four of the streaming services that will be available on the upcoming PlayStation 5 game console.

Breaking News

Here are some of the top streaming stories from the past week.

Peacock Officially Lands on Roku

As you might have heard by now, NBCUniversal’s Peacock streaming service is finally available on Roku’s platform. This story actually started developing late on Friday of last week and our very own Jess followed the developments closely as NBCUniversal and Roku seemed to be on the verge of a deal.

Last week, we reported that an agreement had been reached, and that Peacock would be part of that new deal. After that, we got word that indeed, Peacock would be coming to the platform at some point in the future. First, we heard it was going to arrive “in the coming weeks.”

But as the weekend rolled on, we started hearing that the app was already available on Roku if you knew where to look. And then by Monday, Roku officially confirmed that the app was indeed officially available.

Read more about Peacock finally coming to Roku here.

Amazon’s Got Some New Fire TV Gear

Amazon hosted a virtual event on Thursday to showcase its upcoming lineup of devices across a number of product lines. Chief among those products are its Fire TV devices and the company shared two new updates to the line.

The latest Fire TV updates include a new Fire TV Stick, that’s the non-4K model — to be clear. Amazon says this new model is 50 percent faster than its predecessor and features a new low-power mode to reduce energy consumption. That one retails for $39.99 and will start shipping around September 30th.

Amazon also confirmed a rumored new entry in the lineup, the Fire TV Stick Lite, and it slots in under the new Fire TV Stick. This one also sports better performance than the last Fire TV Stick, but misses out on a couple features, including some key remote control options like a dedicated power button or volume controls. That new Fire TV Stick Lite will retail for $29.99 and will also start shipping starting on the 30th.

Find out more about Amazon’s new Fire TV Sticks

Amazon’s Also Updating its Fire TV Menus

Amazon also announced some updates to the Fire TV menus and interface at this week’s online showcase. The new look should offer up more customization and personalization options for Fire TV users. On the main menu, you’ll be able to scroll through different apps and see previews of content. You can also customize things by pinning your favorite apps to make accessing them easier and faster.

These new menus support up to six individual profiles, each with their own personalization options, watch lists, and more. And kids profiles will have access to family-friendly, age-appropriate content as well. On top of all that, Amazon’s making Alexa a little more helpful as well, enabling new voice controls, including the ability to switch to your profile by asking Alexa.

The new Fire TV devices should come equipped with the new interface and it’ll be coming to other devices in the Fire TV lineup in the coming weeks and months.

Read more about Fire TV’s new and improved menus.

Sling Wants You to Throw a Watch Party

Sling announced it’s trying out a new feature that will allow users in different locations to enjoy the same movie or show together. We’ve seen variations on this virtual group watch feature pop up at other services over the past few months, as companies look to capitalize on the stay-at-home and social distancing behaviors. In Sling’s case, the company is calling its take on the feature Sling Watch Party and it allows subscribers to share their viewing experience with up to three other users.

The feature works with both live and on demand content on the company’s Sling Orange, Sling Blue, Sling Latino, and Sling International plans and each participant can control their own video camera, volume and more. You’ll be able to chat with both text and video.

Learn how to throw your own Sling Watch Party.

We Now Know of Four Streaming Services Definitely Coming to PlayStation 5

We got our first hint of streaming service support on next-gen consoles thanks to some updated info on Sony’s product pages. Specifically the PlayStation 5’s media remote was shown off weeks ago with four unlabeled buttons that we assumed at the time would be dedicated launch buttons for specific streaming services. And this week, Sony updated its product pages to showcase exactly which services those would be.

The $29.99 media remote will offer direct access to Disney+, Netflix, Spotfiy, and YouTube. Of course, it’s highly likely the PS5 will support a bit more than four streaming and entertainment services, but it is interesting to see who gets top billing on a first-party accessory.

Get the scoop on the PS5’s streaming service support.

Industry Reports

What’s the latest on the industry?

Showtime’s Staying Separate from the Upcoming Paramount+ Service

We’re still learning more about the upcoming revamp of CBS All Access, soon to be known as Paramount+. And in addition to what’s coming to the service, we’re hearing more about what’s probably not coming and that includes Showtime.

Apparently, Showtime has seen enough strong growth in recent months, especially during the pandemic, that parent company ViacomCBS is opting to keep the streaming service separate from the upcoming Paramount+. In fact, ViacomCBS’ Bob Bakish describes Showtime’s streaming offering as “strong enough to stand on its own.”

Find out more about Showtime’s recent success here.

Quibi Might Be Looking at Merging or Maybe Even Selling

By now, we’ve all heard about Quibi’s struggles, including a rough start that was made worse by the COVID-19 pandemic and its difficulties in growing a subscriber base.

And this week, we’ve started hearing reports that the company is exploring some strategic options. Some of those options, according to the Wall Street Journal, include raising more funding and possibly exploring some sort of merger deal with a special-purpose acquisition company.

If this “quick bite” of info isn’t enough, find out more here.

Deal Alert

Save some cash with this week’s latest deals.

Get Discounts on Philo Service Through Best Buy

Live TV streaming service Philo announced a new partnership with Best Buy that could net new subscribers some solid discounts on service. You can either score a free first month with a qualifying purchase, or get half off your first bill if you sign up through the retailer.

Get the deal details here.

Disclaimer: To address the growing use of ad blockers we now use affiliate links to sites like http://Amazon.com, streaming services, and others. Affiliate links help sites like Cord Cutters News, stay open. Affiliate links cost you nothing but help me support my family. We do not allow paid reviews on this site. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

* indicates required

Please select all the ways you would like to hear from :

You can unsubscribe at any time by clicking the link in the footer of our emails. For information about our privacy practices, please visit our website.

We use Mailchimp as our marketing platform. By clicking below to subscribe, you acknowledge that your information will be transferred to Mailchimp for processing. Learn more about Mailchimp’s privacy practices here.