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NBCUniversal's challenger to Apple TV+ & Netflix is launching in April 2020

NBCUniversal's still-unnamed streaming service will launch in April, CEO Steve Burke said during an earnings call on Wednesday.

Glenn Howerton and Patton Oswalt in NBC's

Glenn Howerton and Patton Oswalt in NBC's "A.P. Bio."


Over 500 people are working on the platform, which will rely on the same infrastructure underlying Sky's Now TV in Europe, Burke elaborated. Comcast/NBCUniversal owns Sky, and Now TV is available on iOS, Mac, and Apple TV, among other platforms.

"We believe we have a very innovative way of coming to the market that is very different than anything else and has very attractive financial aspects," said Burke.

NBCUniversal's timing will give Apple TV+ a few months' headstart, but the former may have some content advantages. It will for instance become the exclusive home of "The Office," which for years was one of the most-watched shows on NBC, then Netflix. It's also planning original content with a focus on existing properties, one example being a third season of "A.P. Bio," which stars Glenn Howerton and Patton Oswalt.

Nevertheless Burke said he's expecting "the vast majority of consumption" in the beginning to be of acquired shows.

Apple TV+ is launching sometime this fall, presumably after the company's annual September press event, when it will likely confirm an exact date, pricing, and lineup.

Many of Apple's original shows have already been revealed. Yet to be learned though is whether the company will license any third-party material, without which it may be harder to compete not just with NBCUniversal but Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney+.