Comcast Strikes On-Demand Pact with NBC

Not content to offer prime-time shows from CBS on-demand, Comcast has signed a deal to do the same with NBC, starting in May. Comcast and NBC Universal announced an agreement earlier today that will allow the nation's largest MSO to make a dozen programs from NBC Network and its three affiliated cable entertainment channels available on an on-demand basis just hours after their first broadcast run. NBC will contribute eight shows, Sci Fi Channel two and USA Network and Bravo one apiece. As it now does with four CBS prime-time programs, Comcast will offer the NBC Network prime-time series to digital cable subscribers as early as midnight following their initial broadcast for 99 cents apiece. But, in a novel move, NBC's late-night and daytime shows will be available for no extra charge. So will the four cable programs. The lineup of NBC shows that will be offered on-demand includes "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," "Law & Order: Criminal Intent," "The Office," "Las Vegas" and "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno." The four cable programs are USA's "Monk," Sci Fi's "Battlestar Galactica" and "Ghost Hunters" and Bravo's "Celebrity Poker Showdown." Now the big question is whether digital cable subscribers will shell out the extra change for TV series that they could easily record on their own VCRs or DVRs. Stay tuned.

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