October 1, 2014
It's not just TV Everywhere. It's DVR Everywhere.
As of October 1, Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) is granting all X1 customers with cloud DVR services the ability to download or stream any recorded program for viewing on any mobile device inside or outside the home. The feature was available in some areas previously, but is now rolling out in all eight of the MSO's cloud DVR markets, which include Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Philadelphia, San Francisco and Washington D.C. Comcast plans to deploy cloud DVR services to most of the rest of its X1 customers by the end of the year. (See Comcast Cloud DVR Storms Down East Coast.)
Importantly, a Comcast spokesperson confirmed that there are no content restrictions on remote access to DVR recordings. While programmers have slowly but steadily extended licensing rights to include TV Everywhere services, access to live programming outside the home has still been limited. Put in that context, the fact that programmers are now willing to allow unfettered access to their recorded shows is a major milestone.
Get the latest updates on cable's cloud DVR and multiscreen video efforts by visiting Light Reading's multiscreen video content channel. In addition to the news on extended DVR features, Comcast also announced today that it's bringing in-home streaming of the entire Xfinity TV line-up to customers in San Francisco. This X1 cloud feature (available in other markets) was previously off limits to subs in the Bay Area before, but now X1 customers there can access both live TV and on-demand video on the Xfinity TV website, or through Android and iOS mobile apps at home. Comcast's effort to broaden the reach of its X1 cloud services has continued at a steady pace. While X1 was initially offered only to new triple-play subscribers, it's now being sold to new double-play subs as well. Recently, Comcast also opened up its TV Everywhere services to streaming over any cellular network (as opposed to only Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ)'s network), in addition to streaming over WiFi. — Mari Silbey, special to Light Reading
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