Comcast Hits 20 Billion On Demand Views
NEW YORK - Cable giant Comcast said Wednesday that its customers have watched 20 billion entertainment choices on demand since its on demand service launched in 2003.
It said the milestone is a first for the TV industry. The company had announced in early April 2009 that it had reached the milestone of 11 billion on demand views.
Comcast also said it decided to honor the most-watched movies of its on demand servive, as well as TV series, music artists and other content with the Xfinity On Demand Awards.
The most-viewed new release movies overall in on demand form are Warner Bros. release The Hangover, followed by Warner's The Blind Side and Universal's Couples Retreat, Comcast said. The company didn't provide the exact number of on demand views of the titles by its customers, but said it has seen about 5 billion on demand views of movies to-date.
Hangover director Todd Phillips and actors Justin Bartha and Ken Jeong accepted the Comcast award.
The most-viewed TV series on Comcast's on demand service are led by Comedy Central's South Park, followed by HBO's Entourage and HBO's Sex and the City. TV series have attracted approximately 5.2 billion Comcast on demand views.
The most-viewed musical artists on demand are Beyonce, Chris Brown and Ciara, Comcast said. Music content has been accessed about 4 billion times on demand, according to the firm.
The Comcast figures compare to more than 12 billion songs downloaded on iTunes to-date, according to Apple. A spokesman for the tech giant also said that over 100 million movies and more than 450 million TV episodes have been downloaded on iTunes.
“On Demand was the first technology to give millions of our customers instant access to entertainment choices to watch on their schedule,” said Marcien Jenckes, senior vp and general manager of video services at Comcast. “By making a huge library of content available for free with a click of the remote, On Demand was an instant hit and continues to drive viewership.
Comcast launched its on demand offers with 740 movies, music videos and cartoons from a handful of content providers. Available today are approximately 25,000 entertainment choices.
Comcast said that in late June it will kick off a sweepstakes to celebrate the 20 billion on demand views. The sweepstakes give participants a chance to win a grand prize package, which includes a walk-on role on NBC’s 30 Rock plus a Universal Orlando Resort vacation and tickets to a Universal Pictures premiere and after-party. The grand prize package is the latest Comcast cross-promotion of assets of NBCUniversal, in which it acquired a controlling stake in late January.