NCTC in talks with Comcast to license Xfinity Flex

Seeking to proliferate its Xfinity Flex platform nationally, Comcast has engaged the NCTC in discussions that could lead many of the cable co-op’s more than 700 member carriers to deploy TVOS.

“We’re not far enough away that I can tell you what our level of adoption would be,” said NCTC CEO Lou Borrelli. Next TV during a telephone discussion on Wednesday afternoon. “But I can tell you that [Comcast] is very interested in our footprint.”

The National Cable Television Cooperative, which is set to announce a new name when it convenes its annual trade conference in Orlando next month, is negotiating and consulting with its members, mostly small-market cable companies, on issues related to program licensing and technology.

Borrelli, a veteran cable industry executive who took the reins of the NCTC a year ago, leaving his post as general manager at Digicel, a telecommunications company focused on the Caribbean and Central America and America du Sud, led the group, traditionally focused on TV program licensing negotiations, into more of a forward-looking technology leadership posture.

As for Comcast, it’s on the move with its quest to move Xfinity Flex beyond the Comcast Cable footprint and into a TVOS competing with Roku, Amazon Fire TV, and Google TV/Android TV as the gateway to the connected home.

Last year, Comcast struck a deal to power Hisense smart TVs with a Flex-based operating system and sell them at Walmart as XClass TV.

And in April, the No. 1 MSO hired the No. 2 US company, Charter Communications, to form a joint venture to oversee the proliferation of Flex-based TVOS, with Charter pumping $900 million into the cause over the past few years. next five years. .

The addition of Charter creates a massive national footprint to distribute the TVOS. However, enlisting the NCTC would provide the cause with a matrix of smaller markets that otherwise might not be as accessible. ▪️

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