Comcast Planning to Launch Short-Form Online Video Service

Comcast reportedly has plans to launch an online video service similar to YouTube, which would offer short-form content. By offering original content, Comcast hopes it would appeal to a younger demographic and create shows that could also be distributed as part of its traditional TV cable package. The company has yet to announce an expected launch date. Meanwhile, Comcast has unveiled Xfinity Share for its Triple Play customers, which allows users to beam live video to their TVs or those of their friends.

comcast2The cable company’s previous online video endeavor, Streampix, a service similar to that of Netflix, has reportedly been unsuccessful. According to Ars Technica, Comcast has acknowledged that, “cable companies have not found a viable business model for launching online video outside their cable territories, partly because of ‘the difficulty of obtaining national programming rights.’”

With a short-form content model, Comcast could avoid having to secure programming rights, and instead focus on recruiting creators to produce original content for its platform. That task however, is easier said than done, especially when most Web creators are already creating content for video services like YouTube.

The cable company has reportedly been working on the project for over a year, waiting for the U.S. government to make a decision about its proposal to buy Time Warner Cable.

In a related story, The Verge reports that “Comcast is joining Meerkat and Periscope with its own take on a live-streaming app that lets X1 cable subscribers beam live video back to their own TV or the big screen of a friend or family member.”

The company’s Xfinity Share is already available on iOS and Android, but will initially only be offered to customers paying for a Triple Play package. While the one-on-one streams are limited in scope as compared to broadcasting apps like Meerkat and Periscope, Xfinity Share users have the ability to beam content from their camera rolls, such as photos and videos.