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post #961 of 968 Old 04-20-2015, 03:27 PM
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Comcast Lowers X1 Upgrade Fee

Down to $19.99 in Some Markets as MSO Pushes New Platform

By: Jeff Baumgartner

In another indication that Comcast is trying to accelerate the rollout of its IP-capable X1 platform, Comcast has lowered the “upgrade fee” for X1 in markets such as Philadelphia, New Jersey and Connecticut.
Though it's not clear that the policy is in place across Comcast's footprint yet, customers in those areas have mentioned on the DSL Reports message board that the upgrade fee, which comes into play when video subs on Comcast’s legacy video platform are moved over to X1, has been lowered to $19.99.

Depending on the market, the original one-time X1 upgrade fee ranged from $49.99 to $99, with Comcast noting then that the fees went toward the development and enhancement of X1 features. Customers on X1, a video service that features a cloud-based user interface and access to apps and other new elements such as in-home video streaming on PCs and tablets and acloud DVR, also require new boxes.

A Comcast customer who was alerted to the smaller upgrade fee for X1 noted on the DSL Reports message board that the price drop -- from $49.99 to $19.99 -- became effective on March 3, 2014, with Comcast citing “changes in business costs."

Notably, Comcast now offers a self-install option for X1, which should help to reduce deployment costs because it removes truck rolls from the equation (Comcast began to test the X1 self-install kit last year).

Comcast didn’t comment on how it will shape and revise its policy for X1 upgrades in the weeks and months ahead, but this Web page about it still notes that subs who convert to the new platform are subject to a “one-time fee of up to $99 that is assessed, with limited exceptions that vary by market…”

Comcast has not announced how many of its 22.38 million video customers are on X1 today, but did say in October 2014 that it had deployed more than 5 million X1 boxes, and, even prior to that, said it was shipping about 20,000 X1 boxes per day. On that basis, back-of-the-napkin math suggests that Comcast has deployed more than 3.5 million more X1 boxes since late October, pushing its grand total toward 9 million.

Comcast initially rolled out X1 in Boston in May 2012, and now offers it in all systems.

Last fall, Neil Smit, president and CEO of Comcast Cable, reiterated that the current plan is to have the majority of Comcast’s customers on X1 within three years. “We’re right on track,” he said at the time.

http://www.multichannel.com/news/tec...ade-fee/389899
Couple of questions -
1. Comcast required users of the X1 system to also pay for land line and internet service. Do they still do that?
2. There seemed to be a number of complaints about the "worthiness" of the service posted on AVS and elsewhere. Is the service now ready for prime time?
3. The most useful "feature" of the present DVR system is the ability to FF thru ads etc. I start watching a sporting event 30-60 minutes after start time. By using the 30 sec. skip button on the remote, FF thru ads, timeouts, half time etc. Can the X1 remote be programmed to have a 30 sec. skip?

Thanks.
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post #962 of 968 Old 04-20-2015, 06:42 PM - Thread Starter
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Couple of questions -
1. Comcast required users of the X1 system to also pay for land line and internet service. Do they still do that?
2. There seemed to be a number of complaints about the "worthiness" of the service posted on AVS and elsewhere. Is the service now ready for prime time?
3. The most useful "feature" of the present DVR system is the ability to FF thru ads etc. I start watching a sporting event 30-60 minutes after start time. By using the 30 sec. skip button on the remote, FF thru ads, timeouts, half time etc. Can the X1 remote be programmed to have a 30 sec. skip?

Thanks.
1. In most parts of the country you can get X1 with TV and Internet (no telephone).
2. For the most part X1 works pretty well and Comcast is constantly making improvements. I find it to be a lot better than the standard DVR service.
3. I am able to program a 30 second skip feature (which replaces the 5 minute skip feature). The way it works is you are not reprogramming the remote but using the remote to reprogram the X1 box to do a 30 second skip instead of a 5 minute skip.
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post #963 of 968 Old 04-21-2015, 10:30 AM - Thread Starter
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Comcast Takes Its Gig to South Florida

The gigabit tour rolls on.
Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) announced today that it will introduce symmetrical multi-gigabit broadband service to more than 1.3 million customers in southern Florida starting in May. While there are no details yet on pricing, Comcast said its Gigabit Pro service -- which uses fiber-to-the-home networks to deliver Internet speeds of up to 2 Gbit/s -- will debut in the Miami; Fort Lauderdale; West Palm; and Jacksonville regions. The company has also announced that it will launch Gigabit Pro in Atlanta next month and in California in June. (See Comcast Preps 2-Gig Service… Over Fiber.)



http://www.lightreading.com/gigabit/...d/d-id/715215?
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post #964 of 968 Old 04-27-2015, 04:02 PM
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The requirement for Triple-Play was only in the early days of X1, when the supplies were limited, and they wanted to give it to the highest margin subs (even at $10-$20/mo incremental, phone has ridiculously fat profit margins). They offer it now with Double-Play. Not sure why anyone would have Comcast TV and someone else for internet unless they had a muni fiber provider that didn't have TV or something. If you have FIOS internet, you're going to have FIOS TV.
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post #965 of 968 Old 04-27-2015, 06:34 PM
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The requirement for Triple-Play was only in the early days of X1, when the supplies were limited, and they wanted to give it to the highest margin subs (even at $10-$20/mo incremental, phone has ridiculously fat profit margins). They offer it now with Double-Play. Not sure why anyone would have Comcast TV and someone else for internet unless they had a muni fiber provider that didn't have TV or something. If you have FIOS internet, you're going to have FIOS TV.
People who have a landline are the minority in many areas.
As for internet, you are correct 99% of the time -- except there are some number of people that want to cut the cable cord and just buy internet so they can customize their their TV watching.
In home #1 , we have cable TV via the HOA (broad pkg. incl. HBO and SHO etc.) and internet via Comcast as well (which we pay for directly.
In home #2 , we are in the 1% that has internet from a high speed 3rd party. All residents get 100Mbps for $25 added to their HOA dues. (I was able to combine wiring to get 250+) Cable is from Comcast, but we are able to make use of Xfinity Go (poor quality), HBO, ESPN,etc. via their apps with perfect quality.
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post #966 of 968 Old 04-29-2015, 08:29 PM
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Originally Posted by snidely View Post
People who have a landline are the minority in many areas.
As for internet, you are correct 99% of the time -- except there are some number of people that want to cut the cable cord and just buy internet so they can customize their their TV watching.
In home #1 , we have cable TV via the HOA (broad pkg. incl. HBO and SHO etc.) and internet via Comcast as well (which we pay for directly.
In home #2 , we are in the 1% that has internet from a high speed 3rd party. All residents get 100Mbps for $25 added to their HOA dues. (I was able to combine wiring to get 250+) Cable is from Comcast, but we are able to make use of Xfinity Go (poor quality), HBO, ESPN,etc. via their apps with perfect quality.
I know a lot of people have internet and not TV from their cable provider, either because they are cord-cutters/nevers, or they have satellite TV, but having TV and not internet from the cable provider wouldn't make any sense. If you have FIOS internet, you'd have FIOS TV.

Yeah, a situation where you have another internet option that doesn't do TV, or are in a FIOS town without a TV franchise would be the only situation I can think of, and that's a tiny part of the market. Comcast is keeping a lot of landlines alive that couldn't survive at a $30 or higher price point by offering it so cheap in their Triple Play packages, and offering incentives on Triple Play. I don't really have a need for a landline, but I might get one at some point if it's only an incremental $10 plus tax, just for the convenience. At that point, it's almost so cheap it's worth it.
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post #967 of 968 Old Yesterday, 04:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Comcast Introduces Voice-Controlled TV Remote

X1 Viewers Can Search, Set Recordings and Get Recommendations with Natural Speech


May 05, 2015 11:52 AM Eastern Daylight Time
PHILADELPHIA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Comcast today announced the consumer launch of its new remote control that allows customers to navigate tens of thousands of shows and movies on the X1 platform with their voice. The new Xfinity remote with voice control lets viewers search for networks, shows and movies; set DVR recordings; get recommendations; navigate Xfinity On Demand and more.
“Say it and see it. It’s that simple”
“Say it and see it. It’s that simple,” said Sree Kotay, Comcast Cable’s Chief Software Architect. “We want viewers to get to the shows and movies they love quickly, and we’ve built a remote control that’s smart, fast and intuitive. You don’t have to learn a new language or speak like a robot. Just press the blue button, say what you want to watch and it appears on screen. It’s easy, just like watching TV should be.”
The Xfinity Remote with voice control recognizes thousands of common commands including things like:
  • Changing the channel: “Watch ESPN”
  • Searching for movies or shows: “The Walking Dead
  • Browsing Xfinity On Demand: “Show me kids movies”
  • Setting a recording: “Record Saturday Night Live
  • Finding sports teams, games and events: “When do the Phillies play?”
  • Getting recommendations or seeing what’s popular on TV right now: “What’s trending?”
The remote even recognizes hundreds of popular movie quotes. As an example, saying “Life is like a box of chocolates” will find the movie Forrest Gump.
The voice remote is available to all eligible X1 customers. New customers will get the remote during their installation and existing customers can either go to an Xfinity Store to pick one up for free or order online at xfinity.com/voiceremote (shipping & handling charges may apply).
In addition to voice search, the new remote is backlit for nighttime viewing and uses radio frequency (RF4CE) transmission that lets users point anywhere when channel surfing and store their X1 set-top box in a cabinet or another room. It also is more ergonomic with contours that comfortably fit in the viewer’s hand. The setup is simple, and X1 customers can program it to control their TV and AV receiver or sound bar in just a few easy steps.
From a technology perspective, the remote records sound from a microphone when the Mic button is held down and then uses voice-over-RF4CE™ ZigBee® technology to compress and transmit that recording over a low bandwidth link to the X1 platform. Using natural language processing (NLP) coupled with advanced entertainment metadata and relevancy algorithms, X1 easily gets you to what you want.
This device is also another example of Comcast’s commitment to making its products and services more accessible. The company recently launched the industry’s first “talking guide” for customers with a visual disability, and with the availability of this new remote, Comcast has become the only company to elegantly combine “voice in” and “voice out” in one entertainment experience.
“Voice control is a solution for customers with a visual disability or a physical challenge like arthritis,” said Tom Wlodkowski, Vice President of Audience, Comcast, who focuses on the usability of the company’s products and services by people with disabilities. “But it’s also empowering for kids, seniors or anyone else who wants a new and easier way to discover content. Voice search is the great equalizer and a terrific complement to our talking guide.”
http://www.businesswire.com/news/hom...lled-TV-Remote
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post #968 of 968 Unread Today, 10:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Comcast Tees Up 4K Box, Bigger 4K Service

4K-Capable ‘Xi4’ Box to Launch Later This Year 5/06/2015 10:45 AM Eastern
By: Jeff Baumgartner Follow @thebaum inator




Diving more deeply into the 4K video pool, Comcast announced Wednesday that it will launch a 4K/Ultra HD set-top later this year alongside the launch of an expanded lineup of 4K content.

The box, called the Xi4, will run on Comcast’s cloud-based, IP-capable X1 platform, enabling customers to create “virtual 4K linear channels” via MSO’s UHD library. A version of the Xi4 (pictured) from Cisco Systems was spotted passing through the FCC in January.

Comcast said it also developing the Xi5, a device that will support high dynamic range (HDR), an emerging format that supports a wider palette of colors and more brighter pixels. HDR will apply to both HD and 4K content.

On the content end, Comcast said it will offer “hundreds” of titles via an Xfinity in UHD catalog/library that will feature films and other content produced for IMAX from K2 Communications and Havoc TV, full current seasons of TV shows such as SyFy’s Defiance, USA’s Playing House, Satisfaction and Suits, and original fare from Starz, including Outlander and Power. 4K content will be delivered to the Xi4 via Comcast's managed VOD service.

"With Xfinity in UHD, our customers can easily and seamlessly enjoy some of the best 4K programming available today as part of their subscription with no additional equipment or costs," said Matt Strauss, EVP and GM of video service for Comcast Cable, in a statement. "We are committed to providing the highest-quality entertainment experiences across platforms and our next-generation set-top boxes deliver on that promise—providing our customers with UHD and HDR programming on the biggest screen in the home."

Comcast entered the 4K era late last year with the launch of an on-demand streaming app that’s initially available on 2014 Samsung UHD TV and provides access to a small, free content library.

DirecTV was the first U.S. MVPD to launch a UHD service. Dish Network is expected to launch a 4K service later this year in tandem with the debut of the 4K Ultra HD Joey box, which was unveiled in January at the Consumer Electronics Show.

They are all getting into the 4K game amid UHD services from OTT players such as Netflix, M-GO and Amazon.








http://www.multichannel.com/news/tec...service/390434
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