(Corrects 2nd paragraph to make clear ESPN is not an add-on
option but part of regular offerings)
By Anjali Athavaley and Jessica Toonkel
NEW YORK, March 27 Comcast Corp is
planning to rebrand and expand a streaming video option for
broadband subscribers who do not want to pay for a traditional
cable package, sources told Reuters on Monday.
The service, dubbed Xfinity Instant TV, will be priced as
low as $15 a month to roughly $40 a month, sources said. It will
include major broadcast networks as well as sports channels like
ESPN and Spanish language channels such as Telemundo and
Xfinity Instant TV is expected to be available in the third
quarter to more than 50 million homes within Comcast's
footprint, which includes cities such as Philadelphia,
Washington, D.C., and Chicago.
The company is changing its video offerings to be more
targeted as viewer habits evolve. Xfinity Instant TV will be
aimed at high-speed Internet subscribers who cannot afford or do
not want to pay for bigger cable bundles, sources said. The hope
is that subscribers will eventually upgrade to Comcast's X1
Comcast has already given a $15-a-month streaming video
service known as Stream a trial run in Boston and Chicago,
sources said. Xfinity Instant TV is a revamped version of that
offering and will be rolled out nationwide in Comcast's
Other pay-TV providers including Dish Network Corp
and AT&T Inc have started online streaming services for
“cord cutting” consumers, or those who are dropping their cable
packages for other options.
Comcast's service is different in that it is limited to its
territories and to its own broadband subscribers. It has yet to
offer an over-the-top streaming service more broadly nationwide.
(Reporting by Anjali Athavaley; Editing by Bill Trott)