With competition from other content providers, Comcast is looking to expand into other services. One potential deal has them streaming video games to consumers.
Facing challenges from the likes of Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, and Google for the entertainment market, Comcast is apparently pursuing the gaming community to fill in some lost revenue. Reports have it that Comcast has been working with none other than EA to bring video games to the cable provider’s set-top boxes. Costumers in markets that have the X1 service available would be the first to have access to the new offering. The X1 platform is Comcast’s next generation of services offering Internet applications, cloud storage, video on-demand, and video downloads. Not all Comcast areas have the X1 platform available yet and most customers do not have a compatible set-top box. Comcast is working hard and fast to change that though. Given this potential deal and it’s pending Time Warner acquisition, speed may be of the essence.
The initial offerings will not be big releases or hardcore titles. Family friendly or casual games like FIFA, Madden, and Plants vs. Zombies 2 are likely first candidates. Controllers for the service would be tablets running an app. Until the service matures further and supports proper gaming controllers, first-person shooters and action games will have to wait. Once it does mature, however, Comcast could expand to bring other distributors to the platform. This service would run in to competition in the likes of OnLive and, the yet to be launched, PlayStation Now platforms. It could also compete against Steam or EA’s Origin service once a proper level of service and diversity in games is met.
Comcast may need to tread lightly. Their own app for Xfinity is on the Xbox consoles and rumors have been circulating about the possibility of a similar deal for the Apple TV. This may also be a case of push coming to shove with Comcast trying to fend off Microsoft and Sony taking their video on-demand business. Either way, this may be one more venue to get games delivered to players.
Paul Novak is a self described Polish ninja toiling away as an IT professional but more into gaming and writing. Physically existing in the west side of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania yet existentially flowing with the ether of the Internet. Found here at What’s Your Tag? and on the Twitter @dudewantshisrug. Game on with Team XBRO!