Netflix is officially coming to the set top boxes of millions of Comcast customers beginning this week. Comcast video subscribers who are potential new Netflix customers will be eligible for a one-month free trial of the service through their Comcast X1 Xfinity platform, which will integrate Netflix programming into its search and VOD functions.
Former Rivals Netflix And Comcast Join Forces
The partnership was recently announced as the two broadcasters buried the hatchet in what was once a contentious relationship that saw Netflix actively lobbying to oppose Comcast's formerly proposed merger with Time Warner Cable.
The new move should benefit both companies, in that Netflix could reap significant subscriber gains while Comcast could use the relationship to maintain subscribers that it may have lost to cord cutting customers that have dropped cable for streaming video. Comcast shares recently dropped despite stellar earnings report due to concerns over such cord cutting, specifically AT&T's new $35 DirecTV Now bundle aimed at just such consumers.
That drop occurred despite the announcement that Comcast had actually added more than 300,000 broadband customers and 32,000 new video customers in the third quarter of this year. That strong video performance is largely attributed to the company's highly rated X1 platform, which includes a strong, intuitive user interface and a superior voice search and command function on its dedicated remote. Customers can now access the Netflix app from the platform by just saying "Netflix" into that remote.
Free One Month Trial Of Netflix Via Comcast
Netflix programming will now be seamlessly integrated into that platform and be searchable next to broadcast content from network, cable and pay channel providers. Comcast customers will be able to sign up for Netflix directly via X1, and will be offered a no obligation one-month free trial, after which they will be billed the usual $9.99 per month fee for the service directly through Comcast.
Though details of the company's agreement have not been made available, it is speculated that Comcast is being paid a onetime bounty fee for each new Netflix customer acquisition. Current Netflix customers can sign into their Netflix accounts by entering their username and password in the X1 app.
"The Netflix integration into the X1 platform means our mutual customers will no longer need to change inputs or juggle remotes," said Reed Hastings, Netflix cofounder and CEO."Now they can seamlessly move between the Netflix app and their cable service, enjoying all the TV shows and movies they love without hassle."
That includes Netflix rotating stable of feature films and original movies and series such as "House of Cards," "Orange Is the New Black," "Stranger Things," "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" and "Fuller House".