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Comcast


Comcast Corp. (NASDAQ:CMCSAC) CEO Brian Roberts just announced that the cable company plans to launch wireless service by the middle of next year. According to Roberts the aim is to retain customers by reducing churn.

An additional goal is to sell additional services, in this case wireless service, in a bid to increase revenue without having to go out and recruit new customers.

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Infrastructure In Place

As Roberts noted, Comcast already has 15 million Wi-Fi hot spots and leases airwaves from Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZC), making the building of infrastructure relatively easy.

According to the CEO, Comcast has a “good fair relationship” to sell on a wholesale basis. “We believe there will be a big payback with reduced churn, more stickiness and better satisfaction,” he said.

A Long Time Coming

Rumors about a Wi-Fi powered wireless service at Comcast have been around for several years. This announcement merely turns those rumors into reality.

A similar Wi-Fi powered wireless service was launched last year by Cablevision in New York City. There hasn’t been much news about the service except a comment from Verizon executive, Fran Shammo who said late last year that Verizon had been informed cable companies planned to execute on their 2011 Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) agreement.

Integrating X1 And Netflix

Roberts, who spoke at the Goldman Sachs Communacopia investor conference, also said the company would build on its deal with Netflix Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLXC) as well as other streaming services to integrate offerings on Comcast’s popular X1 set-top box.

By integrating Netflix, Comcast will make it possible for customers to watch current series offerings like Scandal on Comcast and past seasons of the same show on Netflix. Although Roberts hinted that other services would eventually be added, he would not name names.

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Everyone In The Pool

Since Netflix has already made streaming arrangements with Apple Inc.  (NASDAQ:AAPLC), Roku and Alphabet Inc.’s (NASDAQ:GOOGC) Chromecast, the company is rapidly becoming a presence on most platforms. Comcast, however, is unique since it is so large.

Meanwhile, Hulu, which is jointly owned by Comcast, The Walt Disney Co. (NYSE:DISC), Twenty-First Century Fox Inc. (TSX:FOXAC) and Time Warner Inc. (NYSE:TWXC) has said it was planning to launch an Internet-based multi-channel video platform next year. If that comes to pass, nearly every major media company will be part of the action.



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