Dish Network and Comcast have announced that the satellite operator’s virtual MPVD platform, Sling TV, will be integrated into the MSO’s cloud-based, managed video delivery platform, X1.
More than 425 Sling TV channels will be integrated into X1, which recently expanded to include Netflix and is looking for more ways to become an all-in-one designation for video programming.
While Sling TV has gained notice for offering an increasingly fat bundle of major broadcast and cable channels over the top, Comcast is much more interested in the “Sling International” component, the multicultural remnants of the erstwhile Dish World that preceded Sling TV.
Within this realm, there are hundreds of channels targeted to niche ethnic audiences that aren’t available already through X1.
“The addition of Sling TV’s multicultural programming will be an excellent complement to the existing international offerings on X1 and will be attractive to our customers,” said Javier Garcia, senior VP and GM of multicultural services for Comcast Cable. “Our customers are becoming increasingly diverse and this is a fantastic opportunity to quickly deliver even more customized and multicultural programming to them, on an X1 platform that’s smart, fast and easy-to-use.”
“Sling TV’s debut on Comcast’s X1 is another step forward in our promise to consumers to be available on their favorite platforms,” added Ben Weinberger, Sling TV’s chief product officer, also in a statement. “For the first time, millions of Comcast customers will have access to new multicultural programming options as well as the full suite of Sling TV programming.”
Speaking at a Goldman Sachs investor event in September, Comcast CEO Brian Roberts said the Netflix integration would be only the first of a number of OTT platforms being tied into X1.
“We are in discussions with other SVOD providers,” Roberts said. “We decided to focus on this one—the biggest one, and the most important to get right. Now, we have a nice template.”