One of the top cable providers, Comcast® plans to launch a product for internet-only customers that will allow them to aggregate some streaming applications, comprising Netflix, YouTube, and Amazon Prime, with a voice remote. According to sources close to the developments, the company is planning the launch in reaction to the challenge of navigating video amid an array of sources.
The product, which will initially be an STB and meant to be a similar platform to XFINITY® X1, will rollout in 2019, according to reliable sources. However, the cheapest cable TV provider has declined to comment on its future plans.
It presently gives video subscribers access to X1, which aggregates cheapest cable TV with several of the same applications that will also be available on the upcoming product, like YouTube and Netflix. However, sources say that the new product will not have cable TV, even though it will give Comcast® subscribers the option to rent movies and shows and upgrade to a video package.
The product is not a competitor to Apple TV or Roku since it will not allow subs access to hundreds of applications, comprising streaming TV bundles such as DIRECTV NOW® or Sling®. Those services are competitors to the video bundle of Comcast®, and the company would not be able to push video service to broadband subs if it lets them access those bundled over the top (OTT) services. The company has not decided the precise number of applications that will be made accessible through the product, revealed sources.
Rather, the company said they want it to be the hub to connected home. Besides aggregating streaming applications, it will also let customers control anything that is connected to the web, comprising smart locks and thermostats.
Comcast® will be marketing the new product to broadband-only subscribers, which seems in line with the recent business situation of the company. It added 334,000 residential broadband subs in the third quarter of 2018 and sees broadband as the main growth factor of its telecom business. It has around 25 million overall residential broadband subs. Recently, Comcast® also announced that it is now the largest gigabit internet provider in the US.
Sources also revealed that the cable giant has not decided on its upcoming product’s price. One thing is for sure going by reported information – it will be a streaming platform for internet-only subscribers.