For Comcast, Industry Shifts May Aid Its Takeover Bid

Edward Wyatt

On the face of it, the merger of the country's two largest cable companies would seem like a nonstarter, given its steep regulatory hurdles and skepticism from consumer watchdogs.

But Comcast's proposed acquisition of Time Warner Cable comes at a moment of seismic change in the television industry, with consumers increasingly cutting their cable cords and instead streaming their favorite shows via the Internet through services like Netflix, YouTube, Amazon and Hulu.

This shifting landscape may aid Comcast as it seeks to persuade government officials — and deploy its prodigious army of lobbyists — to win approval for its $45 billion takeover.

(Read more: What a Comcast-Time Warner deal could mean for you)