Published On: Wed, Sep 6th, 2017

Comcast expands reach of X1 with Canadian MVPD Videotron

Videotron joins Cox, Shaw and Rogers to the list of MVPD customers that have licensed and syndicated X1, Comcast’s cloud-based entertainment platform

In an increasingly competitive industry where the lines between customers and vendors are often blurry, Comcast has become a vendor to be reckoned with. Initially developed for its own footprint to give its Xfinity TV subscribers a better video viewing experience, the company’s X1 platform has become a unique solution that has broad appeal in the industry, well beyond the Comcast footprint.

X1 offers an appealing, voice-activated cloud-based program guide. At the heart of X1 is an infrastructure that enables feature velocity, allowing Comcast (and its MVPD customers) to evolve the service with the fast-moving needs of the market. Indeed, delighting customers is a key tenet of Comcast’s strategy; the service now offers seamless integration of Netflix and is in the process of integrating YouTube in the experience as well. In short, X1 provides a compelling IP video experience, enabling Comcast and its MVPD customers to effectively compete against OTT providers and other disruptors.

Underlying X1 is a flexible software platform based on the Reference Design Kit, a pre-integrated open-source software distribution (Source: http://rdkcentral.com/) that significantly speeds up the development and upgrade cycle of CPE; it enables incremental rollout and supports feature velocity.

Although syndication was not the original motivation behind the X1, Comcast has established a brand with reach in the US and across most major Canadian operators. Its strategy is to customize as little as possible, but, of course, Canadian operators will require at a minimum support for French and some parental controls modifications.

With so much momentum behind X1, there is certainly a lot of headroom for it to grow its market share. It is a highly competitive market, for sure, but Comcast can certainly claim that it keenly understands the unique needs of the MVPDs, and that the X1 is designed around meeting those needs.

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