Cable and VOD Are Complementary, Not Exclusive, Says Comcast
Viewers aren't choosing on-demand services instead of cable, they're using both types of viewing to get more of what they enjoy, Comcast states.
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Do the rise of video-on-demand (VOD) services, such as Netflix, spell dark days for the cable and satellite industries? During a panel discussion on the future of digital entertainment at the recent Streaming Media West conference, Comcast said the two coexist beautifully. Piers Lingle, vice president of product development for Comcast Cable, told how subscribers use his company's broadcast and on-demand services together.
"We are seeing different kinds of behaviors. We have a mobile app which is actually pretty widely used by our customers," Lingle noted. "We focus mostly on current content versus library content, so very similar to what you have on your TV."
Customers are using that mobile app and its on-demand content to enhance their regular TV viewing, not replace it.
"What we're seeing is in large part a lot of the binge viewing and things like that isn't necessarily to 'cut my cord, I'm going to watch it someplace else.' It's 'catch me up, so I can watch it live,'" Lingle said. "I'm joining this new season four episodes in, I want to see the first three so I go to my tablet and I'll watch the first three, and then I'm caught up. Then I stay current with it. We're seeing behaviors like that. A lot of this stuff is pretty early -- we're looking at the data from all the different platforms -- but as more and more content is the same across the platforms, I think we are seeing behaviors which make it very complementary. It's not exclusive."
To hear more about digital entertainment and where it's going, watch the full panel discussion below.
The Future of Digital Entertainment in a Multiscreen World
This panel of leading content owners, syndicators and distributors discusses how they solve some of the challenges in delivering the creator’s intended entertainment experience across new devices and consumer use cases. The panel also shares their vision on where the future of digital entertainment is heading and key industry drivers that could enable the next-generation entertainment experience on mobile and tablet devices.
Moderator: Sarah Barry James, Senior Reporter, SNL Kagan
Speaker: Ken Shapiro, SVP, Digital Ad Sales, Turner
Speaker: Luke Kallis, SVP, West Coast Sales, Vevo
Speaker: Jonathan Mantell, VP, Mobile Entertainment and Video, CBS Interactive
Speaker: Piers Lingle, VP, Product Development, Comcast Cable
Viewers will gain greater connected viewing and social viewing options, plus ways to manage infinite choices.
The service looks especially light on new release movies, but it's $3 per month cheaper than Netflix.
Based on a look at Quality of Service tags, Comcast appears to be violating at least the spirit of the Department of Justice terms that require them not to prioritize their own video traffic over other content
What content would the service offer? How much would it cost per month? Early conversations between Apple and Comcast leave much unanswered.
The good news is that a la carte streaming video options will expand greatly in 2015. The bad news is that consumers still won't save any money.