Lucas Shaw and Alex Sherman, Bloomberg:
Comcast Corp. plans to introduce an online video service offering hit shows from its NBCUniversal TV networks in the next 12 to 18 months, an effort to compete with rivals Netflix Inc. and CBS Corp., according to people familiar with the matter.
The new service will include programs from the NBC broadcast network, and could include shows from Comcast cable channels Bravo, SyFy and USA, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing private plans. Comcast is still determining many of the particulars of the service, including whether it will have a live feed of the broadcast network and whether it will include sports, the people said.
With the FCC’s current attempts to dismantle net neutrality regulations, don’t be surprised if this service doesn’t count against Comcast subscribers’ bandwidth caps or limits. Also don’t be surprised if, at some point, NBC’s news channels — NBC News, CNBC, and MSNBC — become part of something like this, thereby making it more expensive to watch other news networks. Netflix would also become more expensive under such a scheme, too. This will be particularly detrimental in areas where only Comcast provides broadband internet speeds.
It might seem silly that I keep repeating posts on this topic, but that’s because I truly believe that this FCC administration — in combination with the Congressional leadership and White House — will be instrumental in the devastation of the web as we know it by reducing choice to a handful of very powerful companies, and allowing subscribers’ personal information to be sold to advertisers without their consent. I’m not being hyperbolic.