Comcast is plugging the Walt Disney Co.’s Disney Plus and ESPN Plus into its X1 cable TV and Flex broadband-streaming platforms — part of the operator’s ongoing strategy to become the one-stop hub for all video entertainment.
On Monday, Comcast said it started of the rollout of Disney Plus on X1 and Flex customers, promising that its nationwide customer base will have access to the subscription streamer “in the coming days.” Disney Plus offers movies and TV shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic, plus originals like Lucasfilm’s “The Mandalorian” and Marvel’s “The Falcon and the Winter Solider” and “WandaVision.”
According to Comcast, ESPN Plus is now available to its broadband-only customers via Flex. The cable operator said it plans to launch ESPN Plus on X1 in the coming weeks. ESPN Plus programming includes over 10,000 live sports events including exclusive UFC events, hundreds of MLB games, golf tournaments, international and domestic soccer, college sports from 20 conferences, boxing and more.
In March 2020, the cable operator launched Hulu’s on-demand service on X1 and Flex as part of Comcast’s agreement to turn over control of Hulu to Disney. To access Disney Plus, ESPN Plus or Hulu, X1 and Flex users must have separate subscriptions.
The trio of Disney streaming products join a bevy of others available on X1 and Flex, including NBCUniversal’s Peacock, Netflix, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video, Paramount Plus, Spotify, Amazon Music, YouTube, Vudu and Pandora.
“With the launch of Disney Plus and ESPN Plus, our X1 and Flex customers will now be able to enjoy all the best entertainment from today’s most popular streaming services on one device that makes it easy for them to find their favorite programming, or discover something new,” said Rebecca Heap, Comcast Cable’s SVP of video and entertainment.
Once the apps are available to Comcast customers, X1 and Flex users can access Disney Plus or ESPN Plus by saying “Disney Plus” or “ESPN Plus” into the Xfinity Voice Remote or by saying the name of a title from one of the streaming services (e.g., “The Falcon and The Winter Soldier” or “Stephen A’s World”). Xfinity customers will also be able to find the Disney Plus and ESPN Plus content libraries integrated throughout their on-screen guide, including in collections such as “TV,” “Movies” and “Sports.”
As of the end of 2020, Comcast reported 18.99 million residential video customers (-6.4% year over year) and 28.35 million consumer broadband subs (+7.3%).
Xfinity Flex is aimed at cord-cutters who are broadband-only Comcast customers. It provides dozens of over-the-stop streaming services plus the ability to manage Xfinity WiFi, mobile, security and automation services.