Comcast: Out To Make Cable TV An Audience And (Stock) Favorite?


Yet another sign of the convergence of content and technology: For the first time, a cable company CEO made a keynote speech at CES. This morning, Comcast chief Brian Roberts announced a new strategy, calling it Comcast 3.0.

This new approach aims to give consumers access to virtually any content, instaneously, from anywhere. Roberts says now it's not content that's king, the consumer is king-- that in this on demand world, they've got all the power.

Comcast is greatly expanding its video-on-demand movie offerings, planning to expand its list to some 6,000 films, half of those in H-D. Its also going to grow to 1,000 high def channels. It's also making TV content available from the web, allowing comcast's 24 million subscribers to access 3,000 hours of TV from NBC, Fox,CBS and MTV. And, it'll allow you to program your DVR remotely online.

Comcast is also making digital downloads of movies--even in high def--viable by launching a new wideband technology that brings the download time of movies to just four minutes. (Roberts demonstrated this with Ryan Seacrest of all people, which was a bit odd).

Then there's Comcast's new "project infinity" which allows you to watch web video on your TV. And then Comcast says it's going to allow you to access your voicemail over the web through a new service called SmartZone, which they demonstrated with Dennis Miller.

Comcast's stock has gotten pummeled as cable has lost customers to satellite TV and telecom TV packages, but this should give Cablevision stock a boost--it has already moved up. Now, I'd also watch Time Warner stock, which usually moves in tandem with CVC.

I've been talking about how cable has been undervalued for a while--maybe this proves I'm right!

Questions? Comments?