Via its Comcast Media Center subsidiary, Comcast is letting other cable operators tap into its content delivery network in order to provision video-on-demand services.

The CMC is now allowing cable operators to use its HITS (Headend In The Sky) On Demand CDN, which lets the smaller cable operators offer more on-demand video content without increasing their storage capabilities.

According to the CMC, another benefit of the asset-based platform is that it keeps subscribers using the cable infrastructure instead of turning to other options for long-tail content.

The CDN-based network is the same one that Comcast has used to provision its Xfinity on-demand service, which had nearly 5 billion views last year.

Sophisticated algorithms in the CDN utilize centralized content hosting, edge caches and local VOD servers to maximize storage. The HITS On Demand CDN works with the widely deployed MPEG-2 set-top boxes.

"The new HITS On Demand CDN satisfies growing subscriber demand for more content that fits their schedule, delivered using a familiar interface and leveraging cable providers' existing infrastructure. This helps to keep customers turning to cable first for compelling video entertainment," said Leslie Russell, vice president and general manager of HITS.

CMC made the announcement yesterday at the NCTC Winter Education Conference in Austin, Texas.