Availability has already started for Discovery+ on Flex, a broadband video package now in more than 3 million U.S. homes. The streaming service will be integrated into the Xfinity X1 pay-TV interface in the coming weeks, the company said.
Discovery+ launched in January with two versions — $5 a month with ads and $7 without ads. It offers 55,000 episodes of new and library series from the company’s cable networks as well as more than 50 titles in an expanding lineup of originals. The company said in February that the service had surpassed 11 million global subscribers and was heading for 12 million as of the end of that month.
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Comcast has been steadily incorporating a range of streaming offerings into its X1 and Flex packages, with Disney and Hulu joining Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and many others. The strategy at the company is to try to reduce friction between linear and streaming programming in order to keep viewers within the Comcast media experience. X1 now represents more than two-thirds of Comcast’s total footprint of 19 million cable households, which is the largest among U.S. cable providers. Flex is offered free to the company’s broadband subscribers, with extra charges for premium services.
Also on Flex and heading to X1 are Food Network Kitchen and MotorTrend. Food Network Kitchen is a subscription service offering recipes, instructional videos and live and on-demand cooking classes with culinary experts and personalities. MotorTrend is the only SVOD aimed at automotive enthusiasts. Discovery took a majority stake in a joint venture with the publisher of Motor Trend magazine in 2017 and the next year renamed its Velocity cable network after the established brand. An existing streaming service was then plugged into Discovery’s overall push toward direct-to-consumer businesses.
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