Comcast to integrate YouTube app into X1

Comcast Xfinity X1 set top box

Comcast and Google have reached a deal to integrate the YouTube app into the cable operator's X1 video platform.

The move follows last year’s headline-grabbing embedment of the Netflix app into X1. The YouTube app will make the Google-owned online video platform’s vast offering of both user-generated and professional-grade content available at the fingertips—or voice commands—of X1 users, alongside their live, on-demand, DVR and other online programming.

Comcast gave only a vague timeline as to when the integration of YouTube will be deployed across the 50% of its video footprint that currently has X1—the deployment will happen “later this year,” the operator said.

RELATED: Roberts: Netflix first of several SVOD integrations for X1

“By integrating YouTube into the X1 experience, viewers can simply and effortlessly access videos on any topic, from cooking, to beauty and fitness with just their voice,” said Comcast Chief Business Development Officer Sam Schwartz, in a statement. 

Users with the Xfinity Voice Remote will not only be able to launch the YouTube app verbally, but they’ll also be able to conduct searches of the entire YouTube flora and fauna with simple commands like “Show me clips of tragic accidents on Russian highways on YouTube,” or “Show me adorable puppies on YouTube.” Comcast plans to also identify and surface select trending content on YouTube to make it more "discoverable."

“The YouTube integration on X1 will provide users the ability to seamlessly navigate and access YouTube content alongside their cable service. And by simply using their voice, users can now access diverse videos that creators make every single day,” said Robert Kyncl, chief business officer for YouTube, also in a statement. 

Speaking to investors last fall, Comcast CEO Brian Roberts said the Netflix integration was only the first of several platform embedments into X1 to come.

“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.”