After trying hard to stay strong in the fast-running digital market, Comcast finally shut down its only standalone over-the-top service.
Being a Comcast user, if you are looking out for the Watchable service, then you would be surprised to know that the company has terminated the service. The only standalone over the top service has been finally shut down after struggling in the intense digital streaming market.
Launched, two years ago, Watchable was the first digital step of Comcast on providing the best web video in an area where every cable operator had a keen interest in the companies such as Vice and Maker Studio, BuzzFeed, and Refinery29 who are getting proper attention.
The company launched the service back in September 2015. With the offerings, Comcast tried hard to sustain in the market, but eventually end up shutting down the service. Watchable was an ad-supported service which was responsible for providing the non-exclusive, original, and unlicensed content of 30 digital content developers. Overall, the Comcast has invested around $750 million in Buzzfeed and Vox Media. All the customers were allowed to see the Watchable on Comcast’s Xfinity X1 set-top boxes and also online at Watchable.com. Even it was also possible to view the streaming video platform on the mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones via Android and iOS compatible apps. The company has finalized the decision to combine these contents with the Xfinity pay-TV platform based on the X1 setup boxes.
Overall, Watchable was launched with the aim to compete with the Alphabet Inc’s and Google, Facebook, and YouTube Inc.’s online video platform. The streaming video platform no longer plans to fund the original content, based on the three sources including the two companies that sold out the original video series to the Watchable and there is one company that had talks with the Watchable about the original content. But, the content is going to expire at the end of the upcoming month according to one source.
Currently, Comcast has not made any decision on the service, but there might be a consideration on whether the team will end the streaming show or just repositioned it in Comcast, according to a source of the company.
Looking at the scenario, this might not be a concerning factor for the Verizon’s Gogo. The content team of Comcast was responsible for the 30 latest short form shows which got presented on the platform over the previous year. According to the decision of Watchable to pull down the originals was inescapable. Since the launch, Watchable just struggled to grow a sizable audience that would permit the continued content investments.
At the time of launch, Watchable also featured the series and videos from the 30 digital publishers, including the networks mentioned above. Since all the content were licensed on the non-exclusive basis; Watchable was a perfect hub for the videos that all the people could find on YouTube.
Besides these facts, Comcast has finally confirmed that it is pulling down the service app and original content details of the Watchable business. Officially, the company has not made any final decisions on whether to shut down the app fully and just put a break on the Watchable brand. Still, Comcast is searching out the way to distribute the shot-form digital video on the X1 set-top box and all the associated distribution portals it has developed. So, there could be comeback or you just need to forget the only streaming video partner.