Comcast tries to bolster streaming gadget by dropping fee

Technology

In this Monday, Sept. 16, 2019 photo, an Xfinity Flex device is displayed in Philadelphia. As big entertainment companies prepare to launch their new streaming services, Comcast is trying to bolster Flex, its Roku-like streaming bundle, by dropping its $5 fee. Comcast said Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2019, that one box would now be free for its home internet customers. Additional boxes would still cost $5 each. (Eric Kayne/Comast via AP Images)

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NEW YORK (AP) — As big entertainment companies prepare to launch new streaming services, Comcast is trying to bolster its Flex streaming TV device by giving it away.

As with Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and Roku, Flex lets viewers watch streaming services over a regular TV, though they have to subscribe to Netflix and others on their own.

Comcast said Wednesday that one box would now be free for its home internet customers. Additional boxes would still cost $5 a month each.

Flex will support Comcast’s upcoming Peacock streaming service, featuring NBCUniversal shows. Comcast won’t say whether viewers will be able to watch upcoming rival services like Disney Plus , HBO Max and Apple TV Plus . Flex doesn’t support online-TV services that are cable replacements, like YouTube TV and AT&T TV Now.

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