Comcast Adds Remote DVR Programming To iPhone App
Feature Available to 3.1 Million Subscribers in Markets in Nine States
By Todd Spangler -- 3/1/2010 2:59:08 PM
Comcast has upgraded its iPhone app to let subscribers program their digital video recorders remotely -- a feature DirecTV has touted in national marketing campaigns -- but the remote DVR capability is currently available to only around 13% of the cable operator's customers.
The cable operator launched the iPhone app last July. The 2.0 version of Comcast Mobile for iPhone and iPod touch devices, released Feb. 19, adds several enhancements including the remote DVR programming feature.
Comcast Mobile app for iPhoneComcast Mobile app for iPhoneThe remote DVR service currently is available to Comcast customers whose Motorola set-tops have been upgraded to i-Guide A28, which includes the myDVR Manager Web-based management feature.
Last fall Comcast began rolling out that version of i-Guide, developed by GuideWorks, a joint venture between Comcast and Rovi. The A28 IPG is now available in 3.1 million homes and in select markets in nine states: Pennsylvania, Delaware, Virginia, Maryland, Massachusetts, Arizona, Arkansas, Tennessee and Utah.
Comcast said it will roll out A28 with the myDVR Manager feature in additional markets throughout the year.
"With [remote DVR], our customers will never miss their favorite show or movie, because they can program their DVR at any time, from anywhere (PC or smart phone)," Cathy Avgiris, Comcast's senior vice president and general manager for communications and data services, wrote in a blog posting Monday.
Avgiris added, "Granted, it will take us several months to fully roll-out remote DVR programming across the country, but the process is well underway. We're working as fast as we can to bring these new features to you."
Recent DirecTV TV ads have centered on the remote DVR programming features of its iPhone app -- which has been downloaded more than 1 million times -- while AT&T also offers one for U-verse TV subscribers and Dish Network in January introduced a remote DVR scheduling iPhone app.
The Comcast Mobile app, free from the Apple iTunes App Store, also provides access to Comcast.net e-mail; visual voice mail, allowing customers to view and select which voice mail messages they want to hear; address book synchronization; TV listings; and trailers of on-demand movies.
Additional new features of Comcast Mobile 2.0 include "push" notification alerts, to automatically indicate when new e-mails and voice mails have arrived; TV show reminders; and the ability to forward pictures and voice mails as attachments, mark unwanted e-mails as spam and access external e-mail accounts.