Is YouTube TV Dropping Channels in 2021? Issue With NBC and its Impact Explained


Update (October 2, 2021): Both YouTube TV and NBC have reached an agreement, which means the latter’s 14+ channels will stay put at the Google-owned streaming service. Thus, there will be no price drop from $64.99 to 54.99 on YouTube TV, either.

Update (September 30, 2021): NBCUniversal and YouTube TV have agreed to a short extension of their previous contract. What is the duration of this ‘short’ extension is hasn’t been disclosed, but it means that YouTube will continue to host the 14+ NBCU channels that were about to be dropped. For now, YouTube TV’s prices won’t be reduced from $65 to $55 either. This should give both parties some time to mull over their expectations and come to a compromise so that both NBCUniversal and Google get what they want and YouTube subscribers don’t end up shortchanged. 

YouTube TV is one of the more important streaming services in the US market. But it seems that it’s about to lose a few of its NBC channels due to an ongoing contract dispute. What is the dispute about and how will it impact YouTube TV subscribers? All this coming up.

Is YouTube TV dropping channels?

NBC Universal has started a marketing campaign informing YouTube TV subscribers that 14 of its channels could be dropped if the two parties are not able to resolve a contract dispute. The situation is acknowledged by YouTube on its official blog as well, informing its subscribers that if NBCU does, in fact, pull its channels from the service, they will lower their monthly price by $10. 

What is the issue between YouTube TV and NBC? 

The deal between YouTube TV and NBCU networks is about to expire on 30th September, and if a new deal isn’t struck before that time, YouTube TV subscribers may have to say goodbye to all NBCUniversal’s sports, news and entertainment channels. 

As many would have guessed by now, the contract dispute revolves around money, as it usually does in such cases. According to YouTube TV, NBCU isn’t offering them equitable terms to renew the agreement. YouTube TV is “seek[ing] the same rates that services of a similar size get from NBCU” so that it can provide its services to customers at a competitive and fair price. Fair enough.

Oddly enough, NBCU is tooting the same horn. In a statement to the press, NBCU said they’re seeking “fair rates” from Google for contract renewal. According to NBC Universal, “Google is refusing to make a deal at these fair rates and is willing to withhold… programming from their paying customers”. 

In a bid to appease and get YouTube TV subscribers to switch providers, NBCU is directing customers to, telling them that “YouTube TV is about to drop 14+ popular channels…” and that they should “Take action now!” 

Related: How to add HBO Max to YouTube TV and start watching

Will YouTube TV drop NBC? 

In all likelihood, that is what the whole situation is headed towards. Although there is still some time left before the deal expires, it doesn’t look like the two parties are going to be able to bridge their differences, especially now that they’ve taken it to the press and online platforms about the dispute. 

NBC Universal has even added links on their site, urging users to tweet about the situation and chat with YouTube TV executives.

On the other hand, YouTube TV has already specified the changes in the subscription prices for the customers should they fail to resolve the issue. 

Related: Is Discovery Plus on TV? How To Get Discovery Plus On TV

What channels could be dropped from YouTube TV?

When NBC Universal says YouTube TV could lose more than 14 channels, they do really mean that. Here’s a list of channels that could be dropped from YouTube TV:

  • NBC
  • Bravo
  • CNBC
  • E!
  • Golf Channel
  • Oxygen
  • SYFY
  • Telemundo
  • The Olympic Channel
  • Universal Kids
  • Universo
  • USA Network

YouTube could also lose NBC Sports Regional Networks, which includes the following:

  • NBC Sports Bay Area
  • NBC Sports Boston
  • NBC Sports California
  • NBC Sports Chicago
  • NBC Sports Philadelphia
  • SNY
  • NBC Sports Washington

What happens if YouTube TV loses NBC channels? 

If YouTube TV loses NBC channels, they will automatically reduce their subscription prices. If you’re already subscribed to YouTube TV, you don’t need to do anything. All of this will be taken care of without any effort on your part.

On the off chance that Google and NBC Universal end up striking a deal later, the subscription will be back at its original price.

Will YouTube TV drop its price? And how much? 

YouTube mentioned that it will decrease its monthly price by $10, from $64.99 to $54.99. 

How to subscribe to the dropped NBC Channels? 

Unlike NBC Universal, YouTube TV hasn’t been bashing its competitor as much. In fact, they’ve mentioned on their blog how users can sign up for NBC’s own direct-to-consumer streaming service, Peacock

To continue watching your favorite NBC shows, head over to Peacock where NBCU content is available at $4.99/month.

Although there is still time for the two parties to come to some sort of an agreement, the chances of that happening diminish with each passing day. We will keep you updated regardless of the outcome.


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