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Comcast tops 7B VOD views

Wed, 03/19/2008 - 10:40am
Mike Robuck

Comcast announced today that its video-on-demand (VOD) service has topped more than seven billion views and one billion hours watched since it launched in 2003.

Currently, there are about 275 million views per month across the various categories in Comcast’s VOD tier, with customers hitting the play button 100 times per second. Comcast viewers are watching a total of 130 million hours of content each month.

“The numbers speak for themselves,” said Derek Harrar, SVP and GM of video services for Comcast. “Each month our customers watch roughly 40 million movies on-demand.”

Comcast has more than 10,000 titles available for on-demand viewing each month, with 90 percent of those titles available for free. Harrar said that between 90 and 95 percent of the 10,000 titles are viewed each month.

Comcast made a big splash at the International Consumer Electronics Show earlier this year when Chairman and CEO Brian Roberts outlined the company’s vision, called Project Infinity, to put more content into the company’s VOD tier.

Comcast expects to have 6,000 movie titles per month in its VOD movie library over the course of the next 12 to 18 months, with half of those in high-definition (HD).

HD VOD is the focal point of Comcast’s VOD plans. The company plans to offer more than 1,000 HD movies, TV shows and other viewing choices monthly by the end of the year, along with making more television network programming available in HD.

Currently, Comcast has between 250 and 300 HD titles in its library, which includes movies, music videos, network programming and content from premium providers.

By contrast, Verizon said late last year that its initial HD VOD offering contains around 75 HD titles, including a mix of free programs and recently released movies. Verizon also said that it would increase its HD VOD titles to more than 1,000 this year.

Earlier this month, The Wall Street Journal reported that DirecTV was working on a VOD service of its own that it plans to launch in the second quarter of this year.

DirecTV will offer about 3,000 titles, with most of those being accessed via the Internet. The newer, more-popular titles will be a fraction of the 3,000 titles, but those are more likely to be downloaded into digital video recorders (DVRs).

More Broadband Direct:

• Comcast promotes Knott, Waz, Khoury

• FCC's 700MHz auction clears $19B

• DVB-H named the official Mobile TV standard for EU

• Cisco's Linksys rolls out new wireless iPhone

• Report: HDTV service adoption increasing in 2008

• Yahoo reaffirms Q1 and full-year 2008 outlook

• Broadband Briefs for 3/19/08 

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