Comcast Bows 'Watchable' Streaming Service29 Sep, 2015 By: Erik Gruenwedel
Comcast Cable Sept. 29 beta-launched “Watchable,” an ad-supported video service that enables users to watch content from about 30 content partners, including AwesomenessTV, Buzzfeed, CelebTV, Vice, Machinima, Maker Studios and NBC Universal, among others.
The service is available to Apple iOS, Comcast X1 set-top box users as well visitors to Watchable.com. Content will be organized through browser categories, including auto, entertainment, fashion & style, food & travel, humor, gaming, music, news, science & technology, and sports.
Comcast is the largest pay-TV operator as well as consumer broadband provider. It lost 151,000 video subs in the most-recent fiscal period year-over-year — but gained 1.3 million broadband subs. Watchable is designed to appeal to changing consumer habits toward broadband video and TV consumption, while at the same time maintaining a link to the pay-TV universe.
“We think Watchable can be a unique place that curates and distributes the best content from some of the most recognized brands and producers on the Web,” Sam Schwartz, chief business development officer at Comcast Cable, said in a statement.
Schwartz said the platform gives third-party digital platforms access to the broadcast TV for the first time. At the same time, Watchable should link millennial viewers predicated toward digital entertainment and portable access to the television.
“As the video industry continues to evolve, Comcast will continue to experiment. “We’ll continue to make investments in new media, create different ways for people to watch the movies and shows they love and test offerings that have the potential to attract new audiences.”
Indeed, Comcast in August expanded college student access to broadband-delivered IPTV channels. Comcast also recently announced a joint venture with Electronic Arts to develop a new service that brings high-definition video gaming to the television via the X1 set-top box.