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Comcast has unveiled plans to launch Now TV as a $20 a-month streaming video product aimed at the low end of the U.S. market as it packages linear TV, FAST and subscription video-on-demand channels.
“Now TV will be something that we can have as a companion to broadband. It’s a streaming product that really provides the best of Comcast,” Dave Watson, president and CEO of Comcast Cable, told the JP Morgan Global Technology, Media and Communications Conference during a session that was webcast Tuesday.
Now TV, set to cost $20 a month, will be unveiled in the coming weeks, Watson told the investors conference. The new streaming offering will include over 40 live channels from A&E, AMC, Hallmark and Warner Bros. Discovery, plus 20 channels of integrated FAST channels from NBC, Sky and Xumo Play, and a subscription to Peacock Premium at no additional cost.
Now TV will be available to Xfinity Internet customers, with no equipment required and subscribers’ ability to sign up and cancel anytime.
The low-end streaming product builds on Sky’s Now TV platform, which is billed as a cheaper version of Sky’s other higher-end streaming packages. And the new streaming package will be marketed as part of a package of fast broadband Internet speeds and mobile phone offerings.
“Now TV is a great starter video service, priced attractively, but still will be financially accretive for us,” Watson said.
Now TV is the latest innovation from Comcast as video TV continues to go online amid fast-growing streaming competition for traditional media players and consumers increasingly cutting the cord for traditional cable TV packages.
“Clearly everyone has seen the data, where things have flipped and most of the engagement has gone towards streaming. … You look at all those devices, the sheer amount of engagement — you have to ask yourself where broadband is going? And broadband is going to continue to see more streaming, you’re going to see more video games, more applications,” Watson argued.
“Where the network is going, we’re building for the future. There’s not this peak moment in a bubble that’s happening. We’re getting prepared for where the customer is going,” he added of Comcast’s latest pivot to the streaming space.
Elsewhere, Comcast and Charter Corporation have unveiled plans for joint streaming offering Xumo, taking the name from the free, ad-supported streaming service that Comcast acquired in 2010 and which combines streaming devices, content and a streaming platform.
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