Starz Entertainment to Join Comcast's On Demand Online Trial
Starz Entertainment, LLC, which operates 16 premium movie channels including the flagship Starz and Encore brands, and Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ: CMCSA, CMCSK) today announced that selections from the programmer's vast lineup of premium content will be available online to Comcast Starz subscribers as part of Comcast's On Demand Online trial. On Demand Online is a new service that will significantly expand the number of top-rated TV choices available online at no additional charge to cable customers. The trial will initially make 300 movies and other original programming available to Starz subscribers in standard definition, with HD versions and more content added in coming months.
Comcast's Starz subscribers participating in the trial will have online access to a wide array of programming including:
Contemporary feature films such as Hancock, Vantage Point, You Don't Mess with the Zohan, Wall-E, The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian, Step Brothers, National Treasure: Book of Secrets; Pineapple Express, High School Musical 3: Senior Year, Righteous Kill, No Country for Old Men and Enchanted.
Starz original series including "Crash", "Head Case", and "Party Down".
Customers will be able in many cases to see the movies and originals online as soon as they premiere on the standard Comcast video on demand service and before they air on the linear channels. The content will be initially accessible on Comcast.net and Fancast.com.
"At Starz our goal is to allow subscribers to watch our programming whenever and wherever they want," said Starz Entertainment President and Chief Operating Officer Bill Myers. "We are delighted to join with Comcast in this trial of Comcast On Demand Online. Comcast, with its existing base of millions of Starz subscribers, robust plant and strong commitment to on demand will be a terrific partner to help explore the new world of Internet video distribution."
"Starz Entertainment brings some of the most popular contemporary feature films to television and we are pleased to partner with them to bring their exclusive content online to consumers for the first time ever at no additional charge to our existing Starz customers," said Matt Bond, Executive Vice President of Content Acquisition for Comcast. "The addition of Starz premium content to On Demand Online's quickly growing line-up demonstrates the programming industry's desire to meet consumers' increasing demand for content online."
Starz' participation in Comcast's technical trial comes on the heels of last month's joint announcement between Time Warner Inc. and Comcast which introduced a set of principles called "TV Everywhere." Developed by the two companies, the principles are designed to serve as a framework to facilitate deployment of online television content across the industry in a way that is consumer friendly, pro-competitive and at no additional cost to subscribers.
Comcast will begin its technical trial of On Demand Online with approximately 5,000 customers from across the U.S. in the coming weeks - the first national trial of its kind. A major focus of the trial is to test the Company's new "authentication" technology, which will allow customers to receive the same content online for free that they subscribe to on TV. The service will utilize a simple log-on system for streaming content and, in the future, will allow for download content to go. The On Demand Online service will roll-out in phases, adding new features, functionality and content over time to provide consumers with a new way to watch television.
On Demand Online is part of Comcast's Project Infinity, the company's long-term vision to give customers an ever growing amount of video content on multiple platforms, whenever they want.
About Comcast Corporation
Comcast Corporation (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) (www.comcast.com) is the nation's leading provider of entertainment, information and communication products and services. With 24.1 million cable customers, 15.3 million high-speed Internet customers, and 6.8 million Comcast Digital Voice customers, Comcast is principally involved in the development, management and operation of cable systems and in the delivery of programming content.
Comcast's content networks and investments include E! Entertainment Television, Style Network, Golf Channel, VERSUS, G4, PBS KIDS Sprout, TV One, ten sports networks operated by Comcast Sports Group and Comcast Interactive Media, which develops and operates Comcast's Internet businesses, including Comcast.net (www.comcast.net). Comcast also has a majority ownership in Comcast-Spectacor, whose major holdings include the Philadelphia Flyers NHL hockey team, the Philadelphia 76ers NBA basketball team and two large multipurpose arenas in Philadelphia.
About Starz Entertainment
Starz Entertainment, LLC, is a premium movie service provider operating in the United States. It offers 16 movie channels including the flagship Starz® and Encore® brands with approximately 18.1 million and 31.9 million subscribers respectively. Starz Entertainment airs more than 1,000 movies per month across its pay TV channels and offers advanced services including Starz HD, Encore HD, Starz On Demand, Encore On Demand, MoviePlex On Demand, Starz HD On Demand, Encore HD On Demand, MoviePlex HD On Demand, and Starz Play. Starz Entertainment (www.starz.com) is an operating unit of Starz, LLC, which is a controlled subsidiary of Liberty Media Corporation, and is attributed to Liberty Entertainment Group, a tracking stock group of Liberty Media Corporation.