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NBC News joins streaming arena via weekday service with live updates, features

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NBC News joins streaming arena via weekday service with live updates, features

NBC News is officially entering the streaming video news service fray with the bow of NBC News NOW, a precursor to a larger streaming effort NBCUniversal Media LLC plans to launch next year.

The streaming news service, which was announced in March and soft-launched in recent weeks, was slated to open its 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. launch window on May 29, though it added programming earlier than expected to offer coverage of a press conference by Robert Mueller, the special counsel whose team investigated allegations against U.S. President Donald Trump and his 2016 election campaign.

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A production set for the NBC News Now streaming service.
Source: NBCU

NBCU is aiming for the news service to stream 24/7 next year, as it gears up for coverage of the 2020 presidential election cycle, according to an NBC News spokeswoman.

The current format for the ad-supported NBC News NOW is to provide minuteslong news updates called "Briefly," plus interviews and features. It also will supply more in-depth reportage on some of the stories that air on "Today" or "NBC Nightly News," as well as breaking news coverage. It may eventually develop regularly scheduled shows.

Originating from 30 Rockefeller Center in Manhattan, the digital news service has a dedicated staff of producers, writers, editors, reporters and graphics teams and is hosted by various NBC News reporters and correspondents. It will also feature contributions from NBCU's global news-gathering operation and additional partners.

Content, available without authentication, is currently available on NBCNews.com/now, via the NBC News mobile app and on NBC News apps on Apple TV, Roku Inc. and Amazon.com Inc.'s Fire TV. Negotiations for additional distribution outlets are ongoing, according to the spokeswoman.

Several other U.S. network news organizations already operate streaming services. CBS Corp. bowed CBSN five years ago to attract younger viewers. The ad-supported ABC News Live launched in 2018, as did Fox Nation, a subscription service that flanks cable new leader FOX News Channel (US).

NBCU is also gearing up for a broad ad-supported service that is expected to debut in the middle of next year. The yet-to-be-named streaming product will incorporate a host of NBCU fare and will be made available to more than 50 million subscribers via parent Comcast Corp. in the U.S. and recently acquired Sky PLC in Europe. The aim is to also make the service accessible to subscribers of other linear distributors with an eye toward reaching a base of 80 million.